Despite the proliferation of wireless technologies, cables are unlikely to disappear completely. Fibre optic cables are often more reliable and allow for greater data-transfer volumes and speeds, while cables that power and charge computers, printers and other devices will remain essential to a smoothly running office. Clustering them in a cable management system allows any repairs, changes and replacements to be implemented more easily, and also increases safety.
Reflecting the divergent, individual needs, there are different cable management solutions. For example, Studio Cerri & Associati’s ‘Naos System’ cable management for Unifor consists of minimalist aluminium desks with a discreet, opening hatch underneath the desktop into which cables are fed, in order to provide each user with what they need.
For those who already own a workstation, they can always integrate ‘Gwire’, produced by Systemtronic. This understated, practical, rectangular, anodized aluminium desktop grommet brings all the necessary connections into a tidy configuration. Jonathan Prestwich’s ‘Sock’ for Arco, a large, knitted sleeve which covers one of the furniture’s legs, can also be used on existing desks and tables, with clusters of cables tucked safely underneath.
In larger offices, where several workstations are configured next to one another, a different kind of cable management is required, namely one which allows routing of cables and individual connections. These are Systemtronic’s ‘Omegastc’, Thomas Svensson’s ‘Halfpipe’ for Götessons and Swedstyle’s ‘Concept Flex Cable holder’, which are essentially long, open semi-cylindrical holders that allow cables to run through them, and can be mounted underneath or alongside a desk.
And even if all data cables are eliminated, electric cables still remain an issue. But not with Scott Wilson’s and Minimal Design’s ‘Power Pod’ cable management for Coalesse, or Georges Moanack’s ‘ES 01 Extension Socket’ for Punkt., both of which are round extension blocks that allow multiple workstations to plug in at the same time.