External storage has become all the rage these days and it doesn’t seem so far back that we introduced you to the Kingston 64GB Wi-Drive. In that review, I described the Wi-Drive as being a life saver for its ability to create a much needed bridge between my PC and IOS devices, more specifically my IPAD which had no means of uploading my ‘portable life’.
Our article today will highlight the new 128GB Wi-Drive as well as giving you a quick look at a new prototype, the Wi-Drive Plus MobileLite.
To start things off, lets provide an explanation to keep these as easy to understand as possible. Kingston’s Wi-Drive is a very compact external storage device that connects to just about any other device that will accept a wi-fi connection. It will also connect by USB, but the beauty of the Wi-Drive is its Wi-Fi capabilities. Simply turn it on and then accept the connection on your other device, using free downloadable software if using IOS or Android. To move data, photographs, music or videos to or from the device, simply plug in the USB and and transfer your media or data to or from the Wi-Drive folder.
In the package, we find the Wi-Drive, data cable, plug and an instruction guide. It comes in capacities of 16, 32, 64 and 128GB and can be found at Amazon for $64, $83, $79 and $139, the 64GB capacity being on sale right now at $79 and cheaper than the 32GB version. The storage in the Kingston Wi-Drive is a SSD and it is for this reason that it supports multi-user streaming. This is probably the strongest point of the Wi-Drive.
Imagine being on a flight with your family and letting three other members stream media from the Wi-Drive siomultaneously. Not only was this the case for our family on our recent trip to the Honduras, but also, two purchases resulted from my demonstration of the Wi-Drive to co-workers after our first review. Both have children and one terms his Wi-Drive as ‘effective parental media control.’
Kingston has also introduced a new prototype design known as the Wi-Drive + MobileLite that we have been trying out as well. It is not presently available to the public, however, Kingston has supplied them to various media professionals for testing and opinion. On release (date unknown) it should be significantly cheaper than the Wi-Drive because there is no SSD contained for storage. The Wi-Drive+ is essentially a Wi-Fi enabled external card reader that can accept SD, microSD and USB connections, and uses Wi-Fi for media streaming and data transfer just as the Wi-Drive does.
The benefit to the MobileLite is not only that it will be cheaper and accepts a variety of storage cards, but also, battery life is expected to be about 5 hours as the MobileLite doesn’t contain it’s own flash memory.
From a personal perspective, the Kingston Wi-Drive is with me constantly and, in fact, my youngest has stolen the 64GB version to use while at school in Australia since the 128GB arrived. Where devices such as the IPAD try to stay so proprietary as to not even have a USB port, the Wi-Drive makes up for that with a simple Wi-Fi connection and one that can be easily secured as well. Where one would have to rely on ITunes to play their media previously, the Wi-Drive has self contained media software that will play that media on your devices.
The Kingston Wi-Drive was awarded our Innovation Award first time out but we think it deserves Editor’s Choice because of the simplicity and effectiveness of design, accompanied by the fact that pricing has been reduced significantly and is not far off that $1/GB price point!
If we grabbed your interest and you want to know a bit about the GUI seen while using it with the IPAD, check out our first article here.