SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick...untethered storage
Unwire your Flash drive!

Wireless-enabled  USB  sticks come to the rescue of storage-challenged  phones and tablets

Bangalore,  September 21 2015: A 'housefull' sign is great for cinema theatres,   but bad news  for owners of smartphones whose makers didn't bother to provide a slot to add more storage.
Sadly, many of the biggest brands  suffer from this infirmity or arrogance -- all of  Apple's  iPhones,  Samsung's Galaxy S series,  Google's Nexus, Xiaomi's flagship Mi phones.  These  makers want to push you towards  cloud storage services, which pretty soon,  move from free to fee.
What if you don't want to be pushed? What if you want to own one of these fancy phones  but stiil avoid that sinking feeling  when you want to shoot that great video or photo -- and your own-board storage is full? Some of these  no-memory-expansion phones  have built in storage of just 16 GB!
That is why I think the new SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick is an idea whose time has come.   It takes   its own range of   USB flash memory   sticks   and 'unwires' it -- allowing users to  share its content   with  other  platforms  -- phones, tablets, PCs   without a direct connection,  using  the  WiFi 'N' channel.   And unlike the first generation of   wireless external hard drives and flash drives, it doesn't send you looking for a WiFi hotspot:  it creates its own!
The Connect  stick  works  with a free SanDisk app  of the same name.  Install  the Android   or  iOS app on your phone or tablet -- and you can directly  play  videos, look at photos or read documents or presentations  stored on the stick.   In fact,  you can  stream content to three devices at the same time. One useful element in the app is the tool that lets you back up all the photos  in your digital camera.
 It works the other way too:  Download a movie or an office file on you phone -- but save it wirelessly on the Connect stick rather than using up the scarce  real estate  on your device.
Of course, being an USB stick, you can always stick it into your device  directly -- or use  an OnTheGo micro USB cable -- to transfer  files to and fro.   I thought SanDisk  would  go for the latest USB 3.0  standard  which is just making its appearance on  laptops and tablets  and transfers data at 10 times the speed of USB 2.   But they have stuck to USB 2 -- just as the  built-in wireless is up to 802.11 "N"  rather than the  newer and faster 'AC" standard.   But   you will find hardly any  USB 3 and WiFi AC  devices on the ground today  which is why, I'm guessing  SanDisk  has decided to keep down the cost  for now. The stick is hardly bigger than a standard USB flash drive  and comes in  four  capacities   16 GB (Rs 2790), 32 GB(Rs 3790), 64 GB ( Rs 5470) and 128 GB ( Rs 9490). 
In the week that I have been trying it out, the Connect stick has proved to be a dinky little  tool and one that  compulsive  down loaders on phone or tablet will  rate a 'must have' accessory.  - Anand Parthasarathy