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Kingston MobileLite Wireless

Six Battery-Powered Wireless Storage Devices, Reviewed
By , Achim Roos

Weighing in at a mere 3 ½ ounces and measuring 4.9” x 2.4” x 0.7”, Kingston's MobileLite Wireless truly deserves its name. Together with PQI's Air Drive and SanDisk's Connect Wireless Flash Drive, it is one of the lightest and smallest devices in our round-up. Not surprisingly, none of those three products sport storage inside. Instead, they're all mobile card readers.

The MobileLite Wireless offers a USB 2.0 port and an SD card slot that also accommodates SDHC, SDXC, and microSD media. You don't get wired Ethernet, but there is an 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi controller built-in.

Unlike the Voyager Air, Kingston's MobileLite Wireless is not meant to be a general sharing device for any sort of client. Rather, it primarily targets smartphones and tablets. The $50 piece of hardware can also use its 6500 mAh battery to charge mobile components, which comes in handy when you're running low on juice and it's not possible to plug in to a wall outlet. Operating on battery power, expect it to last about five hours.

The MobileLite Wireless can become a WPA2-protected Wi-Fi hotspot. Plug in a thumb drive or SD card in networked mode and that storage becomes accessible wirelessly. This lets you transfer pictures you just took on your smartphone, for example, onto flash media, freeing space up for other purposes. Or, you can access the flash media from your phone and, say, upload a saved image to Facebook. It's even possible to copy data between an SD card and USB stick.

Kingston's submission to our round-up can simultaneously stream photos, music files, or movies to up to three users. You don't have to navigate directories to find the file you're looking for, either. Rather, the MobileLite Wireless scans them for you and offers all audio, video, and image data in a corresponding menu. Measured wireless performance of 5.1 MB/s isn't particularly impressive, though it's faster than Corsair's Voyager Air. What matters most is that all of the video content we played was smooth, without stuttering.

Getting the most out of Kingston's reader necessitates installing the MobileLite Wireless app from either Google's Play Store or Apple's App Store. Using the software, you can upload to and download from storage attached to the MobileLite Wireless, or change its configuration settings (network parameters, for example).

Alternatively, you can use the MobileLite Wireless as a conventional USB drive. Just be sure to power it down first. We observed transfer rates as fast as 21 MB/s over a USB 2.0 cable, which is pretty typical for the second-gen interface.

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