Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you

External drives evolve as WD cuts the cord

The world is almost completely wireless, but we still have plugs for hard drives, though possibly not for long.

We all rely on external storage to back up, and if you don’t, you may want to reconsider that approach.

One of the more necessary things to do when you have documents, images, music, videos — pretty much anything that can be created or downloaded with a phone, tablet, or computer — is back them up.

Unfortunately, internal storage isn’t always the most reliable, so making sure you have the things important to you backed up is something you always have to do.

Whether it’s backing up online to the cloud or to an external solution, having some form of back up is more or less a requirement to having a digital presence and making sure you own what you create, so it doesn’t disappear if the worst did happen.

Hard drives aren’t hard to find these days, either, but they almost all have one thing in common: wires and cables.

Yes, almost every backup solution requires a cord of some kind, be it the plug to let you connect to a USB or Thunderbolt drive, or the Ethernet plug to talk to your home network, like with Network Attached Storage.

But the company formerly known as Western Digital and now known simply as “WD” has a different approach you might want to consider: no wires.


That’s the idea in the My Passport Wireless Pro, an external storage that looks a little like a portable compact disc player, but instead of packing in a small CD reader provides a hard drive of either 2 or 3TB in size, as well as a battery, SD card reader, and enough wireless and processing power to get the drive talking to your phone, tablet, or computer without needing to plug it in.

The drive uses a WiFi connection to make this happen, and while you can connect to the My Passport Wireless Pro using wireless networking directly, you can also link it up to your home network and let everyone else take a gander as to what is on your portable drive.

wd-my-passport-wireless-pro-2016-04Interestingly, you can also take advantage of the battery powering both the hard drive and the wireless connection, meaning if your phone is running out of power, you can actually plug it straight into the drive and “borrow” (so to speak) the battery power of the drive to recharge your phone.

Keep in mind, these are only a maximum of ten hours of battery life for the hard drive to use itself, suggesting it might only offer half a charge to a maximum of one charge before the battery needed charging on the drive altogether.

wd-my-passport-wireless-pro-2016-02Still, that makes WD’s My Passport Wireless Pro more than just your average hard drive, and given the starting price of $389 for what you’re getting, not a bad value either.

You’ll have two options for this one, mind you, with $389 netting the 2TB option while a 3TB variant will arrive for $449, both of which hit electronics stores this week.

Read next