Imation imagines a USB thumb drive that works with phones

As technology owners, we tend to carry so much data with us, but while most of us have at least one USB stick loaded with data that sits on our keychain or in our luggage, it can only be accessed with a computer. Wouldn’t it be great if your smartphone could look at the stick?

Imation may have found the solution for this, creating a USB stick that features two types of connector: the traditional USB full-size connector for laptops and desktops, and then a microUSB connector for plugging the USB stick directly into phones that support this functionality.

Yes, you read that right: this is a USB stick you can plug into a smartphone, with Android 4.1 “Jelly Bean” phones (and potentially cameras, the few that exist) able to read the USB stick when it’s plugged into the device, allowing you to browse files, and move things to and from the USB stick.

“By simply plugging the Micro USB connector into your phone you can drag and drop your precious memories safely into the device, either storing them securely on the USB, transfer them onto your computer or, better yet, take photos from your phone straight to the photo lab,” said Des McDaid, Managing Director for Imation in the Asia Pacific region.

“This USB gives you the flexibility to instantly double the capacity of your smartphone or tablet so there is never a need to ruthlessly delete images on-the-go when scrambling for more memory. The 2-in-1 even lets you access content directly from the Micro or USB drive using plug and play technology – so you can view a presentation on the way to the office or check out the videos of the kids from the weekend, all without slowing down your phone or requiring any device memory.”

Three storage sizes will be available for the 2-in-1 MicroUSB Flash Drive from Imation, with a 16GB, 32GB and 64GB option, though the drive will be a USB 2.0 drive when plugged into computers.

Pricing for the drives start from $29.95, with availability in stores across Australia now. Device compatibility may not extend to your smartphone or camera, however, so check with Imation’s compatibility list before buying with the expectation of having this work on your device.