With the burgeoning megapixels on smartphones and the never ending need to share photos and videos on social platforms, not to mention the myriad of apps and games that demand installation, it’s hard to find space on our devices. And if you are a music listener, no matter how many GBs your phone holds, it’s never ever enough. This is especially frustrating for those that travel and want to carry some entertainment for the long hauls and downtime periods. But where do you put everything? What compromise should you make to justify the extra space? Delete Instagram and all the sepia-colored photos of foods you painfully snapped? NEVER!
Thankfully, we have solutions like the SanDisk Ultra Dual USB Drive.
What is it?
The SanDisk Ultra Dual USB Drive features a two-way connector that allows you to store and/or transfer files from your PC to your Android device of choice. It’s got a micro-USB connector on one end and a full-sized USB connector on the other, which offers a far more easier way to manage files between your PC and your mobile device than hauling a USB cable around.
The Dual Drive (let’s call it that for the sake of brevity) comes in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB flavors – we received the 64GB version for review. It mounts on your Android device as an external USB storage, which is great because that makes it accessible to any file manager app that you may be using. SanDisk also provides its own file manager called Memory Zone, although it’s not mutually exclusive and can be used without the Dual Drive as well.
In my test, I copied a few 1080p TitanFall videos on the Dual Drive to have them play on my HTC One. MX Player had no trouble detecting and playing files off the Dual Drive. The seek time was fast and I experienced no breaks or crashes while viewing files or quickly swapping between them.
SanDisk Memory Zone
Now, I am sure SanDisk will prefer you use their file manager app, so we gave it a try as well which is available for free on the Google Play Store. The Memory Zone is at best functional and provides all of the necessary features for a file manager such as renaming files, moving and pasting files, creating folders, etc. However, the UI is a bit jittery and slow, and for someone used to the far more advanced and speedy file managers already available on the Play Store, the Memory Zone won’t replace them any time soon.
The app does however offer some benefits that will sway you to keep it installed on your device. Primarily its backup and restore functionality lets you not only backup files and folders on the Dual Drive but also to a cloud storage service of your choice. Backups can be performed over mobile data or limited to using WiFi, so you can choose how and when you want the backups to set off.
While the SanDisk Ultra Dual USB Drive is certainly convenient for storing and transferring files, its performance is a bit of a let down, due to the simple fact that this is not a USB 3.0 device. Transferring large files from your PC to the USB drive can take longer than expected. This is also reflected in our disk tests, which rung up some pretty average speeds for a USB 2.0 device.
At $30, the SanDisk Ultra Dual USB Drive may be a bit more expensive than a standard 32GB flash drive, but it offers a convenient way to transfer and access files between your PC and your Android device. It also works as a great storage drive if you want to carry your entertainment without wasting precious space on your smartphone or tablet.
+ Seamless integration between mobile and PC
+ One-the-fly access is speedy
+ Doesn’t force you to use the Sandisk app
- No USB 3.0
- Transfer Speeds just Average