Hassan M Kamal picks two smart solutions to help you expand your phone’s storage and backup data
iXpand Flash Drive
An OTG designed especially for iPhones and iPads, the iXpand Flash Drive has been completely redesigned to double as a keychain. Now, the device is also available as a 128GB variant that costs Rs 9,990.
What we like
The new iXpand is smaller and sturdier than the one we saw in 2015. It now supports USB 3.0, which means sharing files with your PC and Mac is faster. The new storage choices (16GB to 128GB) means you can carry more files on the go. The new iXpand Drive app also comes with new features including a personal vault that encrypts all your files and a built-in camera app that allows one to shoot pictures and record videos directly to the flash drive instead of on the phone. You can backup all your social media photos, contacts as well music on the drive. You can also play videos and music directly from the app.
What we don't
The new lock-in system on the iXpand failed to impress as it loosened up the moment we tried to unlock it; chances are the flash drive may fall off on the go. Also, the new app seems a little buggy as it crashed automatically twice while backing up photos.
Connect Wireless Stick
Smaller than a 3G dongle, the SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick is your personal cloud on a pen drive. Priced R9,990, you can use the flash drive to store 200GB of videos, music, photos and files as well as play and share them with three to four users at the same time.
What we like
Its small form makes the Wireless Stick an apt travel companion. Since it connects via Wi-Fi (b/g/n), you don’t have to worry about cables either. You can also use the SanDisk Connect app to backup photos, videos and music from your smartphone. The app also allows you to stream videos from your smartphone to your Smart TV.
What we Don’t
The speed of uploading data to the Wireless Stick is very low. It took nearly 16 minutes to transfer a 50-minute video of 440MB from a smartphone to the device, which roughly translates to 0.45MB/s. We didn’t face any lag in playing videos, however, the native video player (built into the app) doesn’t allow you to skip time or go forward or backward during video playback.
iXpand Flash Drive: The new iXpand drive is lighter, smaller and more stylish, something iPhone and iPad users will appreciate. But SanDisk needs to make a few adjustments in the iXpand drive app and the locking system of the port.
Connect Wireless Stick: Though the upload speed remains a challenge, the Connect Wireless Stick is an amazing innovation from SanDisk, simply for its small size and the fact that it allows you to back-up, store as well as share your files on the go.