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Fund this? An expandable storage backpack for your Android phone

Don't want a card reader sticking out from the bottom of your handset? This one rides piggyback.

Rick Broida Senior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
Rick Broida
2 min read
An early prototype of the uGO, which effectively straps an SD/microSD card reader to the back of your phone.
An early prototype of the uGO, which effectively straps an SD/microSD card reader to the back of your phone. uGO Devices

Much as I like my new Moto X smartphone from Republic Wireless (read all about my latest experiences), it does have one rather irksome limitation: just 16GB of onboard storage.

Thankfully, the Moto is among the Android phones that support USB On-The-Go (OTG), meaning I can plug in an external-storage device like the Meenova or PKparis K'2. (I'm currently testing both, so stay tuned for some hands-on coverage.)

Alas, products like these protrude from the bottom of the phone, which is both inelegant and risky: one accidental bump and I could permanently damage the Moto's Micro-USB port (to say nothing of the card reader).

Enter Kickstarter project µGO (pronounced "mew-go," as silly a sounding name as they come), an Android storage-expansion system that's like a backpack. Specifically, this slim card reader adheres to the back of your phone, while connecting to the Micro-USB port via a flat cable and minimalist plug that barely sticks out. And it has slots for both SD/SDHC and microSD memory cards.

At present, the uGO measures 1.5 inches by 0.8 inches by 0.25 inches, though the designers are working to make it even slimmer for final production. It adheres to your phone (or case) using "micro suction tape," which leaves no residue and can detach/re-attach up to 1,000 times, according to the developers.

Thankfully, you don't need to remove or even unplug the gizmo when you want to recharge your device, as the uGO itself has an auxiliary Micro-USB port for charging.

All this sounds promising, but I see two issues. First, all the early-bird backer deals are gone, meaning you're looking at a minimum of $35 to purchase a uGO (though, admittedly, that gets you a limited-edition anodized-aluminum model). It remains to be seen what the final price for the product will be, but anything over $25 is too steep, in my humble opinion. (The Meenova sells for just $12.)

Second, the uGO isn't expected to ship until August for the earliest backers and as late as November for everyone else. By then, you'll probably have found another solution, if not upgraded to a phone with more storage.

But if you like the idea of having both SD and microSD slots available and prefer a small piggyback bump to a bottom protrusion, the uGO might be just your solution. Thoughts?