8 Comments

Summary:

The USB flash drive is so useful that it can’t be improved. That’s what I thought, anyway, until seeing the AirStash in action. Add wireless connectivity to a USB flash drive, along with a memory card slot, and you have the AirStash.

AirStash

The flash drive has become commonplace because it makes it so easy to carry files for use with any mobile device. At least you can with any device that has a USB port, and unfortunately a lot of the smaller gadgets we cover are missing that little connection. That’s where the unique AirStash fits into the picture. The AirStash fits in your pocket but combines three devices in one package that lets you put your files on any device with Wi-Fi. Take a USB flash drive, add a Wi-Fi router and a multimedia content server and you have the AirStash.

Just plug the AirStash into a USB port on the computer that has files you need to share with other devices. While it is plugged in, it works like any other USB flash drive, but it also charges the lithium polymer battery for use on the go. When unplugged it can connect to any device over Wi-Fi and transfer files or stream media over a wireless connection to any Wi-Fi enabled device.

In addition to the USB connectivity, the AirStash adds SD/SDHC and microSD/SDHC to the mix. This makes it a breeze to get photos from a camera, and send them to any phone or gadget via Wi-Fi. Photographers can leave the laptop at home.

The AirStash is not cheap at $99.99 but it brings a lot to the gear bag. It makes it simple to access important files and transfer media from cameras and the like, all over an integrated wireless connection. If you’re wondering how this process works, check out this demo of the AirStash in action:

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  1. I get the idea. I just don’t get the idea of spending $99 for a device which is pretty well redundant.

    I can put a 16GB Micro SD card in my N1 and do all of that without the hassle/expense of another device.

    Let me put it another way: Today, $99 = nearly 4 X 16GB MicroSD card. At the end of the summer, (prediction) we will have small android MID devices which will have 1.8 drives and perform this same function.

    Result: Nice idea, but flash in the pan. (same as my pen sized Sony MP3 player purchased in 2000).

    1. I see this as useful for those with phones or other devices that lack a memory card slot. Like the iPhone, iPad and future Windows 7 phones.

  2. Kevin C. Tofel Tuesday, March 16, 2010

    I like the concept too, but I don’t like the fact that it’s nearly 2 inches wide. On some mobile devices that’s going to cover up other ports.

    1. We’re aware of that, which is why we’re including a small USB cable in the box so users can charge without blocking neighboring ports. Fortunately it seems that some laptop makers have planned for this by including a USB port that’s somewhat separate from the other ports. On my (non unibody) MacBook Pro, the AirStash occludes the FireWire 400 port, which I never use on the go; on my Acer AS1410 CULV notebook, the occluded port is the similarly at-home-only HDMI port. Have you noticed this trend too?

      1. Good to know Brian! I didn’t watch the video or see mention of an included USB cable, so thanks for pointing it out. Makes it far more useful of a solution — sure, we could aways provide our own USB cables, but I like the foresight of including one. :)

    2. I find the whole design quite unattractive, myself, though the functionality does seem like it could come in handy for some people.

      The USB connector should be retractable both to protect it and because it looks far better, a la Sandisk Titanium USB sticks, and the entire design would benefit from being more sleek. The entire see-through plastic cap on top looks hideous to me.

      Though to be fair, I guess cramming a card reader, wifi AP and a USB connector into one box probably means you have to shoe-horn in stuff to begin with.

  3. Is the connection secure or open?

  4. Looks cool — but too bad it seems to be a one-way solution. In other words, you can’t offload data from your iPhone to the AirStash.

    Also, you mention microSD/SDHC, but the slot is solely for SD cards, no? Unless you use an adapter, I suppose… :)

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