Got a new MacBook with only one USB Type-C port and a number of devices you need to connect? Nonda may have the tool you're looking for with its Hub+. This device is currently on Kickstarter and has already accumulated 2,102 backers pledging $243,145 at press time. The project, which seeks a goal of only $35,000, will cease taking pledges on June 16, 2015.
"When we ordered our new MacBooks in early April, we realized there was only one USB-C port, and we didn't know how we were going to connect our desktop monitors or other devices," the Kickstarter page said. "On a mission to solve this problem, we spent nights and weekends pouring [sic] over designs and testing prototypes. Finally, we arrived at the Hub+, the USB-C hub for the new MacBook.
The specifications show that the Hub+ provides two USB Type-C ports, three USB Type-A ports that can charge a mobile device, one SDXC card reader, one mini DisplayPort connector and a built-in lithium ion battery for charging phones even when you're away from your desk. This device has an aluminum alloy body and is smaller than a smartphone. The device will even charge your MacBook when a power cord is attached.
According to a timeline, early bird orders will begin shipping in late June followed by mass distribution in July. Those who pledge at least $79 will receive one Hub+ and a mini adapter, which is $20 off the regular retail price. Pledge $699 or more and get the Hub+ pack, which includes ten Hub+ units and ten adapters, and a thank-you note from Nonda. The $3,999 tier provides a 24k gold-plated Hub+ and adapter.
The big deal here is that Apple's new MacBook only comes with one USB Type-C port. Unlike most thin-and-light notebooks that manage to cram more than one USB 3.0/2.0 ports, Apple's solution is severely lacking. You can gauge from the numbers backing the Kickstarter project that Apple isn't providing the ideal solution for adding multiple devices to the MacBook at a reasonable price.
For instance, Apple sells a USB Type-C to USB adapter (opens in new tab) for $19. There's also a USB Type-C Digital AV Multiport adapter (opens in new tab) for $79, which only includes an HDMI port (cable sold separately), a USB Type-C port and a USB 3.1 Gen 1 port. For customers with a VGA-only monitor, there's a USB-C to VGA multi-port adapter (opens in new tab) for $79, as well.
With the Hub+ from Nonda, customers seem to be getting a lot of bang for the buck.
Update, 5/15/15, 11:08am PST: A representative told Tom's Hardware that within the first day, Nonda not only reached its funding goal, but also sold five 24K gold plated units. Ten days later, the company is expecting to break past its stretch goal of $250,000 and plot out additional stretch goals this week. These will be based on feedback from backers and public interest.
In addition to the new stretch goals, the representative said that based on feedback from backers, the company has ripped out the USB-A 2.0 ports and replaced them with USB-A 3.0 ports for a faster connection.