Easy iOS storage

A few weeks ago I wrote about a gadget that just didn’t cut it for me, the livescribe pen. Well in case you think I just hate all new toys, here’s a counter example. 
In contrast to the high hopes I had for the livescribe pen to change – or at least supplement – my note taking habits, I had low expectations for the SanDisk iXpand. Other than its horrible name, its form-factor isn’t very promising either. This flash drive, in addition to the usual USB port, also has this weird tail made out of rubber. That tail looks pretty awkward,but it’s what makes the flash drive special: it has a lightning port on it, which allows the flash drive to connect to iPhones and iPads as well as computers. Considering that I have a desktop and therefore travel with iOS devices only, this gadget is fantastic! I can store additional docs, photos, or even movies on it, freeing up space on the iOS devices, and move documents around much more easily than before.  You can even stream movies directly from the drive. Nifty.

 

the flash drive
The drive is maybe not elegant but it’s pretty compact.
 
Sharing documents with people who are a little less comfortable with technology and/or in places without good wifi is now painless. Sometimes, physical transfer instead of cloud storage is just easier and faster. I can think of many times this would have come in handy at conferences I’ve attended. [and while I’m on the topic, why is free wifi almost always missing at conferences?! It makes no sense.]

 

transferring a file from the ipad to the drive.
Transferring a file is easy
 
Plus, while the physical item is a little clunky (the cap for the USB end is solid but I still think I will lose it eventually), the software is a dream. Once you download the software from the App Store, a very simple tutorial pops up. But even without it, the interface is very intuitive and the UI is clean.

the UI
The clean UI.

Overall, while this is by no means a revolutionary item, it’s been added to my daily-carried gear. It’s not too bulky – especially since I don’t keep a USB drive on my keys anyway – and it just WORKS. So in short:  expensive but effective. I recommend it to all iOS users. 

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