New WD portable hard drive comes in style

Western Digital introduces a new budget portable hard drive that comes with a fashion design pattern geared toward students.

The new My Passport Essential limited-edition external hard drive from Western Digital.
The new My Passport Essential limited-edition external hard drive from Western Digital. Western Digital

You're going back to school and want to label your digital content with a little bit of fashion? Western Digital has something for you.

The company unveiled on Thursday the new 500GB My Passport Essential limited-edition portable hard drive. It's much like any other My Passport Essential hard drives with one big difference: the new drives come with several unique cover designs that supposedly fit a variety of personal styles.

According to Western Digital, these designs were made by students at California State University, Long Beach's Industrial Design program. The drives are available in five patterns: Boom Box, Black Hole, Cityscape, Fuchsia Leaf, and Wave.

Other than that, the drive comes in just one USB 2.0 500GB configuration. The drive is USB-powered, meaning you just need one USB cable for both the data and power connections. It's reformatted for Windows and includes WD SmartWare software, which provides a simple, visual method for backing up the computer's important data.

The My Passport Essential limited-edition portable drive also features user-selected password protection combined with 256-bit hardware-based encryption, which WD claims is available mostly in more expensive devices.

The new My Passport Essential limited-edition portable drive comes with a two-year warranty and is available now exclusively at Best Buy for $120.

About the author

CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews 3D printers, networking/storage devices, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.


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