Desktop PC, server tower, telephone, fax machine, notepad and pens. Although a classic image, this no longer represents the average office workspace. With technology launching faster than many people can keep up with and accessories available left, right and centre, the average desk now consists of multiple devices and an array of chargers. With everything promising to transform your working day, how do you know which one product truly does it all? We look at the 4K Docking Station – an accessory that is changing the way we look at office setups and one which is guaranteed to clear your desk of the cables and chargers that you keep getting tangled up in.

The plug and go functionality of the docking station eliminates the frustration of fighting for space around your laptop to connect multiple external devices. Although necessary to fully harness the available capabilities of the laptop, there sometimes simply isn’t space to use them all in conjunction. As we’re moving steadily toward a one-port era where laptops such as the newest Macbook are leading the way in slimline design and minimalist connection points, the need for a central hub in which to join devices and accessories is clearer than ever. With just one connection into your laptop or tablet needed, you then have the opportunity to neatly add a keyboard, mouse, second screen, security lock and headphones to the dock, creating a clean desk space that still hosts all relevant accessories. The ability to connect to a second screen in particular enhances productivity through the ability to extend your laptop and smoothly work across more than once application at a time. Similarly, mirroring or collaborating your screen when presenting or engaging in cooperative work enhances the visual capabilities of your device.

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Additionally, the ability to use one dock with any device means that your workspace is immediately far more portable. For on-the-go working or even hot-desking, the dock provides flexibility and decreases the volume of technology you need to carry round with you at any one time. As BYOD continues to dominate office culture, the ability to transport your workspace around with you through just one central dock ensures that decreasing connectivity options don’t stall your productivity as you upgrade and change devices over time.

While the docking station itself is not a new concept, it’s the 4K capabilities of the newer models that make this one accessory so revolutionary for the office. Regardless of your device model, the Kensington SD400 Universal USB Docking Station offers 4K Ultra HD resolution, essentially providing a resolution upgrade without changing your current laptop or tablet or purchasing a separate 4K monitor. The screen space, power and clarity of 3840×2160 Ultra HD is projected through the inbuilt graphics card, which only highlights the cost effectiveness of investing in a dock, rather than upgrading each of your current devices and accessories to ensure 4K compatibility. YouTube and the television industry have adopted Ultra HD 1 as their 4K standard and there’s no reason why you can’t be experiencing the same resolution quality in the office. Windows 10 has placed focus on the display elements of its specs and offers clearer text, more scaling options and better multi-monitor support when paired with 4K. The interface appears completely sharp on even 27 inch 4K monitors and means that visual presentation work can now take on a whole new level of clarity.

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The working day often centers around the need to get things done quickly and efficiently, but more often than not, poor internet connection or transfer speeds will sit at the root of a lapse in productivity. Equipped with a Gigabit Ethernet, the 4K dock becomes an invaluable internet connection source and despite the ever increasing wi-fi speeds available, the reliability of an ethernet connection is often instrumental to productivity – it can be faster and in many cases, actually more cost effective than wi-fi. Similarly, the three USB 3.0 ports offer fast transfer speeds that you can rely on, to both increase the efficiency of data transfer and ensure that your working day isn’t hindered by slow moving progress bars. With a plethora of connectivity options, when you’re relying on a fast transfer speed, it’s sometimes just the one that matters.

Kensington’s 2015 productivity survey found that 60% of professionals use multiple devices in the office at least half the time, with almost 60% of them sending files back and forth between a mobile and a computer at least three times per week. With so many accessories available to enhance multi-device working, there should be no reason for this to hinder productivity. Connect your laptop, tablet and smartphone  to the central dock to put an end to emailing files back and forth. Additionally, once connected the 1A fast port means that your smartphone or tablet can be fast charging at the same time – a crucial cabability when working on the go or hurrying between meetings.

Docking stations are an invaluable part of a modern workspace and choosing the 4K option future-proofs your purchase against continually evolving devices and resolutions. Are you using them for business? How have they improved your workspace? Join in the conversation over on LinkedIn

Images via Flickr: Filip Skakun, John Karakatsanis