Seagate is reaching out to smartphone and tablet owners who might want to expand their portable multimedia storage space with the debut of the GoFlex Satellite.Touted as the first battery-powered external hard drive to expand the storage capacity of "any Wi-Fi enabled mobile device" using only Wi-Fi, the GoFlex Satellite is really being targeted at iOS device owners at the moment as the easiest way to manage and even view some of the multimedia (i.e. videos, photos and music) using the free GoFlex Media app on an iPad, iPhone or iPod touch. An Android app is expected to drop at some point this summer.
Nevertheless, anyone with a PC or Mac can use the included software to sync up files from the computer to the GoFlex Satellite. The "Flex" part of the name comes in as users can choose to use a cord for faster transfers, namely with the included USB 3.0 cord. (The drive is also backwards compatible with USB 2.0 technology.)
The HDD can then broadcast content to up to three Wi-Fi enabled devices simultaneously. Battery life ranges from up to five hours of continuous HD video playback, and then it can last up to 25 hours when on standby mode.
So far, there is only one capacity option (500GB), which is priced at $199.99. That's certainly steep for an external drive with less than 1TB of space (and which feels and looks about the same size as Western Digital's My Passport SE for Mac), but you're really paying for cord-freedom here. Additionally, it is cheaper if you're looking in terms to buy an iPad with 32GB or 64GB SSDs. In this case, it would be a better deal to pay $200 for 500GB of space along with a $499 iPad (if you're only interested in Wi-Fi connectivity) with 16GB of space. If you travel often for long periods of time and you want a larger amount of entertainment to tote along with you, then the GoFlex Satellite might fill a void.
The GoFlex Satellite is available for pre-order now from Seagate.com, Amazon and BestBuy.com. The portable HDD should arrive in at least Best Buy stores this July, and an eventual global roll out is planned for later this summer.
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