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The USBduo proves cables don’t have to be boring, does more than charge your phone

USB cables, for all their usefulness, don’t do much outside of connecting two devices together. They’re also hardly known for their aesthetic brilliance. The USBduo is a new Kickstarter project which changes both those things. Thanks to a wooden end casing it looks great, and its functionality is increased considerably, because it combines a card reader, flash drive, and the usual USB cable functionality into one.

Pop a MicroSD card inside the USBduo’s body and it becomes a substitute for a flash memory stick, with the added bonus of having the option to hook up to your PC or your phone, thanks to its full-size and microUSB connections. Cleverly, there’s a second microUSB connection hidden underneath the full-size version, which also makes the USBduo suitable for backing up files from your Android phone to the MicroSD card.

Related: Samsung’s clever USB cable charges three devices at once

Depending on your device, the cable can link accessories such as a keyboard or a mouse with your phone, and it’ll store photos from a digital camera too. The main USB connector is reversible, and is made from either black walnut, bamboo, oak, or maple wood. It’s a single piece too, so there are no ugly seams ready to crack open in the future.

Because it’s also a normal cable, the USBduo will charge up your phone or tablet, and it supports fast charging. It’s sold in either 11-inches or 39-inches lengths, but there are some stretch goals where other lengths could be added in as options.

Potentially, the USBduo is the only cable you’d really need to carry around, and could easily replace the flash drive many of us keep handy too. While the configuration means it’s mainly suitable for those devices with a microUSB port, an adaptor converting the cable over to a Lightning connector for the iPhone or iPad can be purchased.

If you’re quick, the USBduo can be had for just $20. Considering the cost of a USB cable and flash drive separately, that’s good value. Miss out on the early bird offer and the cost will rise to $25, then $30. Standard retail price is $40. A Lightning adaptor costs an extra $6, and there are options for purchasing multiple cables.

The Kickstarter campaign is underway here, and the team needs to raise $20,000 for it to be successful, after which deliveries will take place in June.