Review: SwitchEasy PivotDock
After the iPod shuffle came onto the market, there have been a ton of products introduced that help make docking the shuffle easier. Some products, like the DLO Flexible Dock, make hard-to-reach USB ports easier to get to. Others, like the SwitchEasy PivotDock make the shuffle more aesthetically pleasing.
The actual intent of the PivotDock is to prevent the shuffle from sticking out from the front, back, or side of certain USB ports. This is especially useful for notebooks, Power Mac G5s, and Apple Keyboards. This is also good for flash drives, or any other USB devices.
PivotDock + Apple Keyboard
The PivotDock is a small device, only about the size of a soda bottle cap. Not only does it turn the USB port 90 degrees (so it will be parallel to the computer or hub), but also allows you to, unsurprisingly, pivots 180 degrees so your shuffle can be at all sorts of angles in relation to the USB port. There are detents every 22.5 degrees, so your shuffle won’t accidentally be spun around.
At $15.99, the PivotDock is not as expensive as other products, but it is less-than useful for those who are trying to cram things in crowded USB ports (like those found on notebooks, the Mac mini, the iMac G5, and anything else with a configuration like that). The PivotDock is also not compatible with recessed USB ports, like those found on the front of many Dell desktops.
Overall, the PivotDock is a useful product for those trying to find a better way to dock their shuffle on certain USB ports, or those who have Pro Keyboards and want a back-facing USB port. It’s priced similarly with other USB docks and cables.
The One-Sentence Verdict™
The PivotDock is a cool and unique accessory, but is only good for a certain market.
Pros: Changes angle of USB ports, adjusts for different uses
Cons: Doesn’t work with crowded or recessed USB ports