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Kingston Wi-Drive review: If size doesn't matter, capacity might

CNET editor Dong Ngo takes a look at the Kingston Wi-Drive, a wireless storage extender for the iPad and other tablets.

The Kingston Wi-Drive is tiny, both in terms of physical size and capacities.
The Kingston Wi-Drive is tiny, in terms of both physical size and capacity. Dong Ngo/CNET

It seems I've been obsessed with size lately, so let's move on to capacity immediately. If for some strange reason you want to exactly double the limited storage capacity of the iPad, then the Kingston Wi-Drive would fit the bill perfectly.

The portable storage device is available in 16GB and 32GB capacities, which corresponds exactly to the first and second storage tiers of the iPad. The Wi-Drive is supercompact, about a third the size of the 500GB Seagate Satellite, which was the first wireless storage extender for tablets.

Though much smaller, the Wi-Drive offers one thing that the Satellite doesn't: the capability to connect with another Wi-Fi network to offer Internet access for its connected clients. Other than that, the Wi-Drive is essentially the same concept as the Satellite.

It's a USB portable drive that has a built-in Wireless-N access point and an internal battery. When not connected to a computer, it becomes a media host that streams digital content to up to three wireless clients. Though most clients can access its data via a Web browser, the best way to access it is via native apps.

For now, the Wi-Drive offers a freely downloadable app for iOS devices. In our testing, it worked very well with the iPad--almost well enough to justify its hefty price tag, which is $175 for the 32GB version and $130 for the 16GB version. In the near future, Kingston says it will release apps for other platforms, such as Android.

For more information and to see how you might be happy with something tiny after all, check out the full review of the Kingston Wi-Drive.