Need more USB ports or HDMI ports? This is the solution!

So often we sit around with a problem and suffer instead of finding a solution. That is what I did with my TV that had to few HDMI ports.

Most people might not need that many HDMI ports on their TV. Most people do not need so many USB ports on their computer. But, if you suffer from a lack of USB or HDMI ports, then that is an annoying thing. You can of course plug in and out devices as you need them, but life would be easier if you could have all printers, mouses, keyboards, webcams, network devices and so on connected to your computer at once, instead of plugging in and out.

In the same way you can use only one HDMI input on your TV, but if you want to use a Google Chromecast, an Apple TV, a Playstation, a Roku, an Amazon Fire TV and so on, then it will be inconvenient to always plug in, unplug and so on. So, what is the solution? Is there a solution?

How to get more USB ports and HDMI ports?

Maybe you have considered buying a new computer with more HDMI or USB ports? Or have you considered buying a new TV with more USB or HDMI ports? Wait a minute. I am about to give you a solution that might be much better and that will save you a lot of money!

My suggestion is that you go to Amazon.com or Amazon.de (which is available in English as well) and do a search for one of the following terms:

  • HDMI switch
  • USB hub

What is a USB hub?

Now you might wonder what a USB hub is? The answer is very simple, and by looking at the picture beneath you will probably understand it very quickly.

what-is-a-usb-hub

Above you can see an example of a USB hub.

As you see on the picture it is quite easy to understand how a USB hub works. You simply plug in the USB cable to your USB port. Once connected you can later plug all your existing USB devices into the USB hub and you suddenly have four available USB ports instead of one. You can buy both bigger and smaller USB hubs than at the picture above, but there you have an USB hub with four USB ports. This can also be used on a TV or whatever device you want to make available for more USB devices at the same time.

What is a HDMI switch?

An HDMI switch is just as easy to understand as the USB hub. Take a look at the image beneath to get some more insight.

what-is-a-hdmi-splitter

Here you can see a HDMI switch – quite easy to understand as well!

Just like with the USB hub you will have to connect the HDMI cable into your existing HDMI port on your TV or computer. Once this is connected you can connect your other HDMI devices to the three “new” HDMI ports coming with the HDMI switch. This is however when it gets a bit more complicated than with the USB hub. While the USB port only gives electricity and lets your device read the information, the HDMI port will also show up on your TV screen. So, if you command your TV to read from HDMI 2 (where you have connected the HDMI switch), how will the HDMI switch know which of the three HDMI “ports” to actually use. Let us say that you have an Amazon Fire TV, an Apple TV and a Google Chromecast connected to the three ports. Which won will your TV decide to show?

The HDMI switch is supposed to be intelligent, and thus notice from which of the HDMI ports actual signals arrive. As a result this might work easily and the “right” HDMI port will be started automatically. But, there is at the same time a manual switch at the actual HDMI switch. Here you can tell manually which HDMI port you want to use, and thus your TV will for sure show the content you are interested in.

There are also devices costing a little bit more where you will get a remote control with which you can dictate to the HDMI switch which of the HDMI ports on the HDMI switch to use!

Are you happy?

I was struggling with few HDMI ports for a long time, but with this I found the solution. Has this article helped you out?

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