The first version of the PCBs for the Custom 4-Port USB Hub have been manufactured! The circuit design (available on Github) is straight-forward. It is based around the ubiquitous FE1.1s USB 2.0 High-Speed 4-Port Hub Controller.
Because we're connecting our Hub directly to one of the USB ports on the Raspberry Pi, we can have peace of mind knowing that the USB-related circuitry on the Pi is reliable. We skip dealing with some of the nuisances that encountered when designing powered hubs.
The motivation to have a custom USB Hub is that it gives us more flexibility for connecting the controllers, adapters (e.g., Wi-Fi, Bluetooth), or any other USB device. Also, having the hub inside the RASPICON instead of externally (perhaps using an off-the-shelf hub) will make the overall design more compact and improve the aesthetics. Finally, instead of dismantling an Off-the-Shelf hub and adapting the PCB to our own enclosure, we get more control of the placement of the connectors, mounting holes, etc.
Now we wait for the FE1.1s ICs to arrive to start testing!