The Good The good-looking IoSafe Rugged Portable hard drive is designed to safeguard your mobile data against extreme conditions and includes a data recovery plan that covers up to $5,000 worth of damage. The drive supports USB 3.0 and comes with all necessary cables.
The Bad The Rugged Portable is rather expensive, doesn't protect data against extreme heat, and requires a separate cable to work with USB 2.0. Its performance, though fast, could be better.
The Bottom Line Relatively compact and ultrarugged, the IoSafe Rugged Portable could be a great investment for someone who's constantly on the go or works in a challenging environment such as a ship, an oil rig, construction sites, or even war zones. For others, it would probably be overkill.
IoSafe Rugged Portable
First introduced at CES 2011 with much fanfare, the IoSafe Rugged Portable hard drive is the portable version of its 15-pound brother, the IoSafe SoloPro. Much more compact than the SoloPro, the Rugged Portable is about the same size and weight as a 3.5-inch internal hard drive. This is because it's the first portable drive on the market to offer protection against extreme conditions, thanks to its watertight, full metal casing and built-in shock-absorbing technology. Other than extreme heat, the drive can survive almost anything else, even certain types of bullets.
The Rugged Portable offers good performance as portable drives go. It's bus-powered and comes with enough cables to draw sufficient power from a computer's USB ports. With pricing that ranges from $149 for a 250GB version to $399 for 1TB, the Rugged Portable is significantly more expensive than other portable drives of the same capacities. To make up for this, IoSafe bundles the drive with a year's warranty that includes a Data Recovery Service that covers up to $5,000 worth of data damage.
If you work in hazardous environments, travel frequently, or tend to get rough with your devices, the Rugged Portable would be a good investment. Those who want to have an ultrasafe drive to use at home should consider the SoloPro, as it can withstand fire also. Users who don't need these features, however, might want look for more affordable alternatives.