With competition getting fierce in the market for network storage, manufacturers need to step up in order to keep up. Last month, Iomega jumped into the four-drive-bay NAS game with its StorCenter ix4 device. Now it's spiffing up its two-drive offering released last fall: The company has announced updated features for the StorCenter ix2 that are available in newly shipping units and as well as in a free download for previous owners.
The biggest news is that the ix2 now supports BitTorrent for all those nice-and-legal downloads you want to grab from your peer-to-peers, and catches up to competitors by offering remote access to its files from any computer, though there is a catch. While the first year of remote access is free, Iomega is charging $9.95 per year after that. The company provides a performance improvement in the form of "jumbo frame" support, which provides more bandwidth for larger file transfers. It has also instituted a folder quota system to let you set limits on the size of folders on the device so you can prevent them from getting too large and crowding out other files and folders.
The ix2 still lacks iTunes server support, but is otherwise pretty full featured for a $299.95 1TB version (or $479.95 for 2GB), including two USB ports. Gigabit Ethernet connection, RAID Level 1 compatibility and support for UPnP and DNLA devices in addition to its new features. The design is a bit underwhelming, however, and it lacks the hot-swappable drives of its more expensive four-bay sibling.