Thumb drives are becoming more viable as backup solutions as their storage capacities continue to grow. On Tuesday, Lexar announced two new thumb drives that come bundled with backup software designed specifically for Netbook and notebook users.
The two drives are the Echo SE and the Echo ZE. Both are flash-based and offer very high capacities for their physical size. The Echo SE is a compact thumb drive that can hold up to 64GB of storage; the Echo ZE is an ultracompact thumb drive that offers up to 32GB of storage space. The Echo ZE is just slightly longer than a USB connector and would seem to almost disappear once inserted into a computer's USB port.
Despite the small size, the two drives offered decent throughput performance in our quick test, registering around 10MBps for writing and about 24MBps for reading.
The first time you insert the drives into a computer's USB port, be it a PC or a Mac, the Echo Backup software will prompt you to install it; setup takes just a few seconds. After that, each time you insert the drives, the software runs automatically, backing up the preconfigured set of important data files, such as documents, e-mails, photos, etc. The software also offers optional AES 128-bit encryption, enabling protection in the event of drive loss.
The Echo SE is also available in 16GB and 32GB capacities, and the Echo ZE also comes in 8GB and 16GB capacities. The top capacity versions of the Echo SE (64GB) and Echo ZE (32GB) costs $260 and $140, respectively. They are available now.