What it lacks in size, it more than makes up for in speed—meet the brand new LaCie USB 3.0 FastKey. The international storage company is dubbing it “the smallest solid-state USB 3.0 drive” available. The drive’s fuss-free, sturdy aluminum casing is a unique contrast to its specs.
At first glance, it looks like a regular USB flash drive with the rectangular casing and metal connector. However the FastKey uses a unique set of memory technology. While it uses a USB 3.0 interface to connect at ten times the speed of USB 2.0, it also adds the performance of SSD and DRAM. These layers of memory fuse to create a solid-state drive that writes your files at 100 times the speed of a 2.0 flash drive. That translates into about 1,000 mp3 files being transferred in less than one minute.
According to a LaCie exec, “With most flash drives, transferring a large number of photos and mp3 files can take a few minutes. With the FastKey, transferring small files is immediate. You can back up or share your music and photo libraries as you head out the door.”
This drive measures in at just about half the size of the next smallest SSD, which is created by Samsung. The FastKey takes advantage of AES 256-bit encryption to safeguard your sensitive data against privacy threats. You can also use free 4 GB of online storage from the company’s Wuala service.
Going small for SSD comes at a steep price tag for some. There are three different storage capacities: 30 GB for $150, 60 GB for $250 and 120 GB for $480. Taking those prices into account, you have to be extra careful in where you transport and store such a small device. Luckily, LaCie does in fact offer the capability to strap the drive to a keychain.
Between the size and the speed, you have to give LaCie credit for using USB 3.0 technology and going the extra mile for data transfer with SSD and DRAM. If design and size can be streamlined without losing out on speed or other performance specs, it could be a win for consumers.
Is the speed worth the size or price? Share your thoughts on LaCie’s FastKey.