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Circuit Breaker

This dongle adds USB and microSD storage to your phone charger

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The Sanho HyperCube follows in Maktar’s footsteps

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Sanho’s Hyper brand has brought us some pretty clever solutions to the shortcomings of today’s smartphones, laptops, and tablets for years now, including a sleek, charger-mounted USB-C hub for MacBooks and wireless charging for AirPods before that was cool. By comparison, their latest is a little bit derivative — but it could be a handy way to automatically back up your iOS or Android device when you plug it in at night.

The company’s new crowdfunded project is called the HyperCube, and it’s a USB dongle that lets your phone charger double as a storage device. Drop it into your charger, pop a microSD card, USB flash drive, or even an external hard drive into one of its full-size female USB ports, connect your charge cable into the other, and the app can (allegedly) back up your phone while it’s charging. It works with laptops as well.

While I say “allegedly” because it’s an unfinished Kickstarter product, I don’t seriously doubt the company’s claims. For one thing, Sanho isn’t some fly-by-night startup. It’s delivered on Kickstarter promises before, and there’s already a product on the market, the Maktar Qubii, that does much the same thing as the HyperCube. Sanho’s advantage is that second USB port for external drives, plus a discounted early adopter price of $30. But if you don’t need the second port and want to try the idea sooner, you can find the Qubii for $40 right now.

Here’s Sanho’s Kickstarter page if you’re interested. I’m pretty happy with the incredibly powerful HyperJuice battery pack I bought there last fall, though that one may not be the best on the market when all’s said and done.