I’ve just gotten a chance to take a look at the new Kingston MobileLite – a 9-in-1 USB card reader that supports the most popular media formats used in the mobile phones, digital cameras, PCs and portable media devices I carry around. The device which is about the size and shape of first generation USB thumb drives, has two hatches that open to reveal slots for cards in the following formats:
- full-size Secure Digital
- MMCmobile, RS-MMC
- full-size MMC
It’s possible to mount three cards (in different formats) at one time, each appearing on the PC or Mac as a separate volume. For example, I took the miniSD card from my Nokia N800, the SD card from my Treo 700p, and the microSD card from my Nokia N95 and loaded up the MobileLite with all three. Each volume mounted as expected and on both Mac and Lenovo X60t Tablet PC, the OS detected the images I have stored on these cards and offered to import them via iPhoto and Windows Explorer (respectively).
Three Secure Digital (SD) Flash memory card bundles will be offered in addition to the device itself: a 1GB standard SD card combo pack is available now and 1GB microSD and 2GB SD bundles be released later this quarter. The pricing is very attractive.
- MobileLite 9-in-1 Card Reader ($ 8.99)
- MobileLite Card Reader with 1GB SD Card Bundle ($ 22.99)
- MobileLite Card Reader plus 2GB SD Card Bundle ($ 34.99)
- MobileLite Card Reader plus 1GB microSD Card Bundle ($ 23.99)
MobileLite USB Reader Features and Specifications:
- Dimensions: 3.04” x 1.16” x 0.60” / 77.3mm x 29.5mm x 15.3mm
- Speed Rating*: Up to 9MB/sec read; 4MB/sec write
- Compliant Standards: USB 2.0, SD 2.00, SDHC and MMC 4.1
- Weight: 0.046 lbs. / 21g
- Operating Temperature: 32° to 140°F / 0° to 60°C
- Storage Temperature: -40° to 185°F / -40° to 85°C
- Compatibility: Windows Vista, XP (SP1), 2000 (SP3); Mac OS (10.x and above); Linux (2.4 and above).
- Guarantee: Two-year warranty on MobileLite reader; lifetime on SD cards.
This little unit has already earned a spot in my gadget bag. As I tend to carry a number of cards with me at any given time, loading up music, podcasts, ebooks, photos, and documents for use on my mobile devices and backing up content I’ve created on those devices to my PCs is easier and faster than ever. The transfers are faster than using Bluetooth and don’t drain the batteries on my mobile gear the way a mini-USB cable tends to.
At under $10.00, this is a gadget I can recommend without any qualifications to anyone who uses a mobile phone, handheld computer, digital camera, or other device that uses memory cards in any of these nine formats.