Great for Syncing 10 iPads/iPod Touches at Once

I’ve asked the question of Plugable if their 10-Port Hub will support the syncing of 10 iPads at a time. They told me no twice. I didn’t believe them, so I ordered one and wallah it works great, so explain to me why they tell customers that it doesn’t work when they could be selling this port to hundreds or thousands of people like me in the educational setting that need an inexpensive tool to sync multiple iPads/iTouches? Correct, it won’t charge them, but that wasn’t my question. I already knew that answer.

Hi Brent,

Thanks for posting this! We have to be very careful about setting expectations for the iPods and iPads. Confusion about their behavior is our #1 source of negative reviews, and we’d rather people not buy the product, if they’re not going to be perfectly happy.

There a few reasons for the confusion and caution:

  1. Apple uses proprietary methods to signal their devices to charge at full rate (… ). Apple doesn’t directly say this (in fact, they point to the “power supplied by the port” as the issue, which isn’t correct), so customers are easily confused. Even knowing that as you do, most customers can’t separate the charging and syncing easily (for example, even in your case, if an iPad has only a few % power left, and it’s plugged into our 10 port hub to sync, it will stop when it runs out of battery; and most customers would be unhappy with charging having to be done in a separate place than syncing).

  2. Our 10 port hub that you’re using (… ) comes with a 2.5 Amp adapter, so it assumes a mix of high and low power devices, in terms of power draw. So 10 devices pulling 500mA (like an iPod charging would) won’t work. iPads don’t even try to charge with their screen on and USB max power (500mA) available, so they sidestep the issue.

So unfortunately, even though there’s some useful potential, we just don’t have an easy way to set expectations about syncing 10 iPads, where we can be confident that no one would be disappointed.

That said, if there are more technical users out there (e.g. ones who can find and read posts like this), then they can get “below the headlines” and realize what’s possible, as long as expectations are set properly.

So thanks again for being so persistent and for posting about it. It’s a great help to others!

Thank you!!