SanDisk unplugs and goes wireless for next generation of storage

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Plugs are so passé it seems, and storage maker SanDisk is going to prove just why, with a new range of products that keep the plug, but encourage a more plug-free way of connecting.

You’ve probably seen and used SanDisk USB drives in the past, taking the thumb drives out for a spin by plugging the USB connector into a computer and moving files over.

That’s the way USB drives have worked for the past decade or so, but it might not be the way thumb drives work from here on in.

This week, SanDisk has pulled the covers off its “Connect” range of products, with two devices designed to link up with computers that may not necessarily need to plug into the computer.

The first of these is the Connect Wireless Flash Drive (above), a thumb drive with a built-in battery that provides up to 64GB of off-hand storage of mobile devices.

Up to three devices can be connected to the wireless USB drive simultaneously, and the up to 4 hour battery is charged over the USB port, which can move files to and from the storage inside, too.

Compatibility for devices over wireless works with mobile devices such as the iPad, iPhone, Android, and even Amazon’s Kindle Fire, with the SanDisk Wireless Flash Drive app letting you get at what’s stored on the wireless drive.

Also part of the SanDisk Connect family is the SanDisk Connect Wireless Media Drive (above), which is a small pocket friendly hub designed to take a charge over USB and provide access to what’s stored on it and even an SDXC card to any compatible wireless device.

Storage in the Wireless Media Drive is set to either 32 or 64GB, but with the SDXC card slot, this can be expanded quite a lot, and SanDisk has gone to the trouble of making the wireless streaming capable of sending out five different movies to different devices at once. With up to 8 hours of battery life, that could be a lot of movie watching.

Pricing of the SanDisk Wireless Flash Drive comes in at 16GB for $90, 32GB for $110, and 64GB for $180, while the Wireless Media Drive weighs in at $140 for 32GB or $180 for 64GB, with availability coming to Harvey Norman stores in April.