The constant pursuit of smaller, more lightweight, more portable devices dominates today’s technology landscape. From the boardroom to the home office, the ability to cut the cords and create a seamless experience in any situation is paramount. These devices, however, often exist in a connected ecosystem. So, while the world is increasingly going wireless, there remains a need for cords that aren’t cut. Connectivity solutions are the products that charge, dock, and connect users to various devices, peripherals and empower performance and productivity without compromising the portability of “grab and go” devices.
Products that offer workplace flexibility, like universal docking stations that quickly convert any brand of laptop or mobile phone to a fully-functioning workstation, are more important than ever. Increasingly so for workers who are running from meeting to meeting, and who’s desk time is at a premium. Flexibility and comfort are important, but tomorrow’s employees will also require advanced mobility tools, that allow them the same level of productivity on the road, as in the office.
People who are looking for disruptive technology to drive fast, high-performance connectivity are quickly adopting cutting-edge technologies like Thunderbolt 3, that enable single cable docking of laptops to multiple displays and peripherals with blazing-fast speed to improve workflow. Knowledge workers like creative professionals who work with high-resolution, high-bandwidth and graphically intensive images, video, CAD drawings and medical professionals who require fast access to large datasets and high-resolution media use these tools today.
The office of the future is likely to feature WiGig wireless connectivity, which operates in the 60GHz frequency range and can achieve data transmission rates up to 7Gbps. Analysts predict WiGig could eventually yield speeds of up to 25Gbps, and, when integrated into products like docking stations, could prove to be a game-changing connectivity tool that powers the office of the future.
The paradox of portability and performance
Given the mobile, flexible nature of the modern workforce, device portability is critical. Devices have been getting smaller, lighter and thinner over the past couple of decades. That trend will continue into the future as portability increasingly becomes a factor in device utility. A significant shift in device utility and its associated connectivity challenges is the increasing proclivity of users to run more sophisticated business processes, like editing and presenting, directly from their mobile phone. Seemingly simple solutions, like travel A/V adapters that boast the latest I/O profiles (like USB-C) will become a road warrior essential. Workers need to be confident that they can connect wherever they roam and the workplace of the future means hard-to-find connections are made easy with the right connectivity products. The ability to edit on-the-go and then seamlessly connect to a fully-equipped workstation, all from the user’s mobility device, truly represents the potential for productivity in the office of the future.
The cables that connect these devices to peripherals are also evolving, with the future-proof USB-C connector becoming more popular. USB-C, which is a standard connector capable of carrying multiple technology protocols (like DisplayPort and Thunderbolt 3), will be adopted by more manufacturers so that users can connect universally as the workplace expands beyond office walls.
Sean Taylor, Director, Product Management, StarTech.com
Image Credit: Chris Oakley / Flickr