[Review] PhotoFast i-FlashDrive
We received last week one of the first production models of PhotoFast’s iPhone/iPad data sharing drive. PhotoFast is a Taiwanese enterprise with a well-established name and still one of the pioneers in the research and development of ultra-fast memory devices.
In this review we will talk about their latest entry in what I tend to call the “i-Segment”, where “I” is everything Apple manufactures. We received one of the very first 8GB samples. Which should represent the final built; potential customers can buy online or at their local retail.
It is a USB flash drive with an iPod/iPhone/iPad connector at the other end. it can double up as a flash drive as well and comes in three storage capacities of 8GB, 16GB and 32GB. The prices are 98 US $, 119 US $ and 192 US $ approx for the 8GB, 16GB and 32 GB models respectively. Its core purpose is to share files between your devices + backup your device contents without the need of a PC or laptop.
It’s a USB stick…
In essence, this product is you perfect all-round USB stick. It’s flat yet a bit oversized in width but I have used it multiple times for just taking a project from work back home or throw some music on it that I can later sync to an iPhone or other compatible i-device. Best of this device is the part where I tend to put all the songs I really love on the iPhone/iPod, and due to the lack in mass-space, I use the iFlashDrive to put some extra albums which I probably listen to a couple of times before erasing them again from the flash stick.
USB compatibility: Windows XP and higher, OSX all versions and tested with success on Linux OS too.
iPhone 3G and on/iPad all/iPod Touch 3rd and on.
This product comes with an app available at the iTunes store. You are required to install this for the device to be detected for backing up your iPhone content and settings. The app is free and works on iOS 4.0 and higher.
For operational instruction I refer you to this video featuring PhotoFast’s Representative Milton explaining in a general overview what the product is capable of. In essence it works like a charm without any special fiddling or tweaks. If you know how to use your iPhone, you know how to use this iFlashDrive. It just pops up as expandable memory storage.
There is one thing that could use some modification, and that would be the very low writing speeds from PC to the drive. In general I never saw speeds higher than 4.5mb/sec. When using it as a USB flash drive a lot of the time, it isn’t living up to what normal USB flash drives are capable of performing. Another thing is the fact that it is fairly big in width. But that might have something to do with the fairly wide size of Apple’s default connector.
Actually, these 2 tidbits are the only things that I didn’t like much. But this product does perform excellently to do what it was originally built for: backup and synchronizing your data. It does give you a safe feeling to know you always have a full system backup in case your i-device goes bonkers. Just click and restore and your “i” is back alive and kicking in no time!