Microsoft is no stranger to making elaborate laptop docks, but its latest may be particularly appealing if you need a genuinely robust hub for work. The company has unveiled a Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock that, as the name implies, uses speedy Thunderbolt 4 (and hence USB 4) to connect your laptop or tablet to all your peripherals. There's enough bandwidth to connect two 4K monitors at 60Hz, as well as 96W of power that's enough to recharge some demanding portable PCs.
The dock offers a healthy mix of modern and legacy ports, plus a few helpful design touches. You'll find two USB-C ports, two USB-A ports, a 3.5mm headphone jack and 2.5Gbps Ethernet on the back, but you'll also find one USB-C and one USB-A port on the front — it shouldn't be awkward to plug in a thumb drive or phone. Tactile indicators on the back make it easier for people of various abilities to find ports by feel, while the 20 percent ocean-bound plastic reduces the environmental impact.
Before you ask: while the dock is designed with the Surface Laptop 5, Surface Laptop Studio and Intel-based Surface Pro 9 in mind, that's not a strict requirement. Any computer with Thunderbolt 4/USB 4 ports should work. You could attach a MacBook Pro, if you're feeling ironic.
The Surface Thunderbolt 4 Dock is available today on Microsoft's store for $300. That's considerably more expensive than many laptop docks, and you may wish it had features like a full-size SD card reader. The price is on par with similarly powerful docks, though, and it may be worthwhile if you'd rather not spend valuable minutes plugging in peripherals when you sit at your desk.