Ability to transfer data between different iDevices and computers including sharing files; ability to play audio files directly from drive; option to send small files as email attachments; works with Mac OS, Windows PC and Linux for added compatibility.
Expensive; can’t watch video files directly from drive; slow transfer speeds for large files; restricted by Apple’s transfer protocol; not compatible with older iPhones, iPods; disables Wi-Fi during operation.
US$99.95 (8GB); US$149.95 (16GB); US$199.95 (32GB)
Available in 8GB, 16GB and 32GB versions, the iFlashDrive from HyperDrive is a useful solution for adding extra storage to your iOS device, with the ability to copy, swap, save and back up files from each device. The pocket-sized drive comes with both USB connecter and 30-pin dock connector for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch so you can perform a two-way data transfer between iOS devices and Mac/PC. The process requires users to download a free companion app – i-FlashDrive – from the Apple iTunes App Store, which quickly identifies the connected drive and available files.
A simple interface shows what files are available on both ‘Local Storage’ and ‘External Storage,’ with the additional option to log into your Dropbox account from within the same app. iFlashDrive natively supports a range of video, photo, music and document files, those supported by Apple, with the option to open non-supported files in a suitable app.
As you might expect iFlashDrive works best with smaller files, when the wait time is pretty much non-existent. A built-in audio player will playback music and speech based files directly from the drive, while a handy voice recorder is also included. You can also quickly backup your contacts for those who haven’t already done so via iTunes. Large files, particularly video files, struggle to copy and play and also appear to be a drain on your iOS device battery.
The maker’s Sanho technical specifications note transfer speeds of 10MB/s for USB, 100KB/s at iDevice side are limited by Apple’s current transfer protocol. It’s a real shame users can’t simply play video files from the drive itself, an option the CloudFTP also from HyperDrive currently offers. This would significantly supplement your iDevice capacity without the need to wait for files to be copied over.
Macworld Australia’s buying advice
The iFlashDrive from HyperDrive is a useful, although expensive, option for those who lack access to iTunes, Wi-Fi networks and iCloud services or simply want a secure and potentially convenient way to copy, delete and share files from various iOS devices and computers. Sluggish video transfer is an issue, however, for those hoping to watch favourite TV shows and films on the go.