Loads of Apple accessories debuted at CES 2014, but one of my favorites was the Jimi by Bluelounge. Simply, “putting your iMac USB port within reach, Jimi is a j-shaped, USB port extension for your iMac to bring your USB port forward, allowing easy access.” It is fairly straight forward and, after a pause, genius.
It is rare to so strategically pinpoint little nuances to everyday uses of Apple devices. Bluelounge specializes in these minute details, solving issues we gradually came to accept over time. I resorted to spinning my iMac around each time I wanted to access the USB ports. With an additional monitor on each side of my iMac, adding anything to the port required me to carefully pull my iMac forward and gently turn it to one side. Sometimes, I resorted to reach over the monitor, blindly cramming my cables into the aluminum back. My reckless behavior is no more, thanks to the Jimi…
Form is function
Truly, there is no reason to belabor the Jimi description. Jimi is a j-shaped, plastic USB 3.0 extender that clicks into the speaker port on post-November 2012 uni-body iMacs, either 21.5″ or 27″ models. Importantly, Jimi is USB 3.0 pass through. Therefore, the extender does not deprecate the data transfer speed. The black design ensures it almost melts away in the shadow underneath the iMac monitor, preventing any undue attention. My eye is not drawn to it as I write this post.
The distraction comes from the unflush fit. It seems the Jimi is slightly torqued and the left side of the USB hub sits in front of the screen surface, while the right side fits flush. Although, I cannot tell while I sit at my desk. The casual observer would not even notice when taking a closer look. However, my compulsive attention is disappointed. I originally assumed, I plugged it into the USB crooked, but after repeatedly testing, I came to the conclusion the Jimi is slightly bent, causing the issue. It is less than .5mm, but I felt negligent not mentioning the lip.
The USB hub is also very firm, which I assume will break-in slightly over time. Until then, I am holding my monitor in place when removing my OEM Lightning cable.
Despite these picky frustrations, the Jimi is a problem solver. I was excited by the uni-body iMac design, but losing side-positioned USB ports was not worth slimming an already simple design. In my opinion Apple went a little too far when reducing the iMac. The reduction caused a struggle in function, causing users to reach for the USB ports. Now, the Jimi is able to solve a problem caused by Apple. At the reasonable price of $14.95, it is not a gamble. Stop reaching around or over your iMac and find convenience in the cleverly designed Jimi by Bluelounge.