Docking stations can effectively transform a laptop computer into a desktop by allowing you to connect a display, mouse, keyboard, and other peripherals with a single cable. But a wireless docking station lets you do it without plugging anything into your laptop at all.
They’re not nearly as common yet, but Synaptics wants to make it easier for device makers to produce wireless docks – the company has unveiled a Gemini wireless laptop docking station reference design that uses WiFi 6/6E technology for high-speed connections.
The idea is that you can connect all of your wired devices to the dock, but you won’t need to plug the dock into your PC. Just walk into the room and your computer should automatically pair with the dock by the time you sit down and unfold your notebook. When you pack up and leave the room, your devices will disconnect seamlessly.
Synaptics says its system uses a combination of WiFi 6 and Bluetooth radios to ensure fast, stable connection and dynamic graphics compression to enable support for a wireless connection to up to two 4K displays.
One thing that a wireless dock won’t cover is charging your laptop, but Synaptics says that can also be handled wirelessly thanks to a wireless charging pad that you can place your notebook on top of.
While Synaptics won’t be selling the Gemini Dock itself, the company has put together a suite of hardware and software that device makers can use to produce their own Gemini-based docks. Features include a BCM43752 WiFi 6E wireless radio, a Synaptics VS641 network processor, a DisplayLink DL-1950 video interface, and a Synaptics Media Agnostic USB Interface.
There’s no word on when we’ll see wireless docks based on this reference design hit the streets or how much they’ll cost if and when they do. But Synaptics says the reference design is available to partners now.