Tech accessory maker Native Union is no stranger to decluttering, simplifying, and beautifying the everyday lives of people drowning under the weight of all the devices requiring a charge or transfer. I’m already a big fan and user of their weighted knot cables, a Lightning-based connection of braided nylon that has all but eliminated the “cable dropped behind the table” conundrum. They’re aiming higher and wider this time around with a charging hub designed to declutter the area in the home where phones, tablets, and smart watches go to drink from the well of electricity.
The Native Union Eclipse is a decor-friendly solution for a common dilemma in households today. Instead of leaving connections and cords exposed, the Native Union team has packaged three USB ports within the clean form factor of a cylinder designed to make wrangling-wrapping cables a cinch. One of the cables can be converted into a USB-C connection with just a slide of switch, all in preparation for the eventual deluge of USB-C powered devices, while each charging port is also monitored and maximized to maximize power-ups.
The Eclipse has two additional tricks that allow the hub to surpass the usual low expectations of its competition: touch the top of the ECLIPSE and it rises and glows underneath, effectively lessening the chances of fumbling around in the dark to connect your waning iPhone before bed. Tap it again and the hub’s LED-illuminated halo says goodnight, with top descending flush with the edges again. Slick.
Native Union has launched the Eclipse surprisingly as a Kickstarter. Surprising because there’s little doubt there’s a growing market for utilitarian tech accessories given thoughtful consideration to blend into homes, offices, and shared workspaces. Early bird price is currently just under $60, with an eventual retail price aimed for $79.99, delivering in the spring of 2017.