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Is this $69 USB-C docking station the ultimate mobile accessory?

The Plugable USB-C Stand Dock can extend the contents of your phone or tablet's display onto a monitor with all the ports and charging power needed, while keeping your device perfectly viewable.
Written by Kerry Wan, Senior Reviews Editor
A smartphone plugged into the Plugable Docking Station, tilted at an angle.

Shoppers for multi-port USB hubs and monitor adapters may be familiar with Plugable, the computer accessories maker behind some of the best docking stations we've tested at ZDNET. 

Today, the company is expanding its lineup with its first "for mobile" docking station, one that can extend the contents of your phone or tablet onto a monitor as high-resolution as 4K, while giving your device a bevy of essential ports and 100W pass-through charging.

Also: This clever laptop mount turns your phone into a second screen

The dock typically sells for $69, but for a limited time, Plugable is offering a $20 discount to early-bird shoppers, bringing the multi-functional hub down to $49.

Such docking stations are not new by any means; a generic Amazon search presents me with a series of alternatives that function similarly but are missing a feature or two that Plugable's offers. 

The standout feature to me is the tilt-adjustable stand (see image below), which turns an otherwise docked and forgotten phone or tablet into a secondary display that can actually be interacted with.

A tablet with a monitor acting as a second display with Plugable's USB-C docking station.

Plugable says the docking station is compatible with most phones and tablets, including the latest Samsung Galaxy S22 (and tomorrow's S23 series, I'd suppose), the iPad Pro, and the Microsoft Surface Pro 9 -- devices that ZDNET's review team has found to be more than capable of running solo for work and play. 

Also: This discreet dock transforms my laptop into a fully featured desktop PC

For the best pairing, I'd suggest any device that has a mobile-to-desktop feature like Samsung's DeX or Motorola's Ready For, services that can take full advantage of an external monitor for productivity.

All the ports that come with the Plugable Docking Station.

Other specs of the Plugable Docking Station include a series of ports: two USB 3.0 (5Gbps), SD and microSD ports, an audio jack that supports input and output, and an HDMI port that can extend up to a 4K 30Hz monitor. There's also 100W USB-C pass-through charging to keep your phone topped up while it's docked, besting the 30-60W ratings of the alternatives listed earlier.

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