Until now, there has been no way for owners of an iDevice such as an iPad or iPhone to connect to a USB flash drive. USB flash drives have undoubtedly become a necessity for many PC and Mac users, as it allows for portable storage of important documents, media, etc. The lack of a USB port on Apple’s iDevices has made it impossible to connect a standard USB flash drive, although the iFlashDrive is now the first one in existence to change this. Unfortunately, the iFlashDrive does not come cheap at $99.95 for 8 GB of storage, $149.95 for 16 GB of storage and $199.95 for 32 GB of storage, although hopefully this will spawn the release of similar clones and increase competition in terms of pricing.
The iFlashDrive is compatible with iDevices as well as Macs and PCs (or anything with a USB port) thanks to the use of the thirty-pin connector in addition to USB. It allows users to move data from their iDevices to any USB-capable device or even another iDevice. There are only two slight downsides to the iFlashDrive: that you’ll need to install an application from the App Store to use it, and that it’s size and design takes up so much space that it will likely block the use of other ports on your PC or Mac while in use. For example, when using the iFlashDrive on a MacBook Pro, you will be blocking the second USB port as well as the SD card slot.
However, an additional feature that might make up for the iFlashDrive’s faults is that the application that users must download from the App Store allows users to sync their data to and from Dropbox, and soon Evernote and Box.net as well. Although HyperDrive, the company behind the iFlashDrive, has a lot of work to do in order to improve the product’s design and hopefully drop the price down to something reasonable (who would really pay $200 for a 32 GB flash drive these days), this is still truly a significant product release as it is the first of its kind. Hopefully we’ll either see some improvements or some competition in the near future so that making the purchase is truly justifiable.
The iFlashDrive is available now for purchase in its three storage capacity options from HyperDrive.