Kingston Wi-Drive

Aron Schatz
February 19, 2013
Product Page
Kingston Wi-Drive
Kingston Wi-Drive
The Kingston Wi-Drive is a good addition to your mobile device with limited internal space and no external storage expansion options.

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Mobile devices may seem like the greatest thing since sliced bread, but there is a major problem with limitations of storage. What good is having a device that can play all your media at your fingertips if you can't take the device anywhere and play it. Storage on mobile devices has been a limitation from the beginning and certain devices even limit the amount of storage by not having micro-SD support. What ever happened to pragmatism for consumers?

Think of this situation... You have any iOS device and a select few Android devices (Google Nexus devices, for instance) and have more than the content than the device storage allows. You are forced to pick and choose what content you want. This is totally unacceptable with technology today. No amount of cloud storage is enough when you don't have internet access that's unlimited. Kingston has you covered with their Wi-Drive to enhance your storage needs. Now, you can supplement your storage with this external portable drive that works directly with your device. It is a NAS built with mobile in mind.

About Kingston


In 1987, Kingston entered the market with a single product. Founders John Tu and David Sun fulfilled a severe shortage of surface mount memory chips with a memory module that would serve to redefine industry standards for years to come.

Combining one of the most extensive and stringent testing processes in the memory industry, an exceptional free tech support center and a consistent roll-out of innovative technologies, Kingston Technology has continually set industry standards of quality and reliability throughout its history.

Reliability is the cornerstone of the Kingston product strategy. It has played a key role in maintaining the long-term relationships developed over the years with customers. Kingston remains committed to exceeding industry standards with every new development while maintaining the signature reliability of its products.



The Kingston Wi-Drive was originally an iOS targeted device. This is why the packaging looks like it is built for Apple device. Since Google's Nexus devices are now very popular, and that they don't have any external storage, the Wi-Drive works on Android.


The back of the box contains the various labels and other information you would find on a retail box.
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  • Capacities: 32GB, 64GB, 128GB
  • Dimensions: 121.5mm x 61.8mm x 9.8mm
  • Wireless Network Interface: Wi-Fi 802.11g/n with wireless security (WPA/WEP)
  • Rechargeable Battery: up to four hours of continuous use
  • Local Storage: wirelessly transfer files to and from the Wi-Drive app and the Wi-Drive hardware
  • Camera Roll support: Allows users to move photos from an iOS device to Wi-Drive in order to free up space. Cable: MiniUSB to USB cable included, user can upload files and content from their PC/Mac to the Wi-Drive using the USB cable
  • Operating Temperature: 32°F to 122°F (0°C to 50°C)
  • Storage Temperature: 14°F to 158°F (-10°C to 70°C)
  • Convenient: pocket-sized for easy transportability
  • Guaranteed: one-year warranty, free technical support
  • Customizable Device Name (SSID): User selectable Wi-Fi priority list when there are multiple APN/Key available
  • File Support: Wi-Drive can store any file type, but playback and viewing are Based on the files supported by the mobile device.
  • General file format support:
    Audio: MP3, WAV
    Video: m4V, mp4 (H. 264 video codec)
    Image: jpg, tif
    Document: pdf

Marketing Summary



Kingston's Wi-Drive is portable, wireless storage for your mobile devices, including iPhone, iPad, Android devices, Kindle Fire and more. Wi-Drive lets you store and share your favourite content with your favourite people. It gives you up to 128GB of added storage for your mobile device and lets you share photos, videos, music and more with three or more users on their own mobile device. Access Wi-Drive through any Internet browser or download one of the free Wi-Drive Apps to access and easily share the content on your Wi-Drive. Best of all, Wi-Drive is backed by legendary Kingston reliability and a one-year warranty.



The interior packaging is pretty standard. It is like an onion that you peel away to find layer after layer. Enough of the poetic references, though...


Included in the box are a mini-USB cable, an AC adapter, an instruction manual, and the drive itself.
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Kingston Wi-Drive


The Wi-Drive, itself, is all black with a line of silver around the edges. It is a design that looks like the older iPhone 3 series, but that was when this product was actually conceived and makes sense that the Wi-Drive has the same design cues. There is a single button the the device that controls the power.


The bottom of the Wi-Drive contains the various labeling and other information. This is a 16GB model that is now discontinued. In fact, the entire compliment of Wi-Drives will be discontinued sooner or later (more on that soon). 32GB is the smallest drive Kingston makes right now. Unfortunately, there is no external storage on this product (yet).


The side of the Wi-Drive has the single power button that controls the device. There is nothing else that can be done except turn it on and off.


The top side of the drive contains the mini-USB power connection. Strangely, you can't power the device while it is on. This is due to the storage on the device becoming a mass storage drive while plugged into the computer. It might be an oversight to not allow charge and use, but if you have a computer, there is probably no reason to use this anyway.

Testing and Use


The initial setup is fairly easy. You download the Wi-Drive application from Google Play or the App Store and connect to the WiFi network of the drive, itself. In this image, the name of the network was changed to "ASE-widrive" and is already connected. A Nexus 7 was used for this testing which makes sense since it has no external storage.


The settings part of the application actually launches a browser. As you can see, the Wi-Drive uses an IP address of and use a webserver to do most of the functionality of the drive, Apache 2.


These settings control the wireless SSID that the drive uses and the channel and security options.


Since you are connecting to the drive over WiFi, your device won't be able to access the internet. The Wi-Drive comes with a second WiFi device that can bridge connections. It seems very finicky with mix mode networks and networks that have WPA/2 encryption, so keep that in mind. It attempts to work on those networks, but doesn't. Firmware updates will probably fix that, but for now, you may be stuck with WEP or nothing. Most uses of this will probably be on trips or something that the internet is not an issue anyway. The Wi-Drive will last about four hours of use on battery power.


The application grants access to the drive when you're connected and once you do, you can copy or move around files between the local storage and the Wi-Drive. This is very important since there are only a bunch of file formats that the Wi-Drive will stream to play. That's exactly how the Wi-Drive works, it is a streaming webserver. It does not act like local storage.


DIG DEEPER. Make sure your videos are in a good codec with a valid container (m4v works fine) to be able to stream them from the drive. Otherwise, you will be forced to copy them to the local storage and then play from there. In this respect, it acts like a NAS. If you can't stream the files you want to play, you need to free up space (by moving files to the Wi-Drive) and then copying the file you want to play to local storage.

The streaming works like any HTTP stream you've encountered. The majority of the time works very well. Seeking and such also work for the most part. There are times when you get the weird choppy playback or out of sync video/audio when attempting to seek on videos, but this is a minor problem and comes with the streaming type of playing.
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Video Review

The video review goes through the Wi-Drive and how it plays videos. Give it a play through. The video also shows the next generation Wi-Drive beta product that's being tested right now. The new version will allow external storage (SD and microSD) and has some interesting new features for mobile devices. There won't be a review until the product is released, though.


The Kingston Wi-Drive retails for less than $100 for the 32GB at the time of this posting date. It is a very good choice for expanding the storage needs of your device if you just don't have enough. The Wi-Drive also supports three mobile devices at once so you and two other people can use the Wi-Drive at the same time. Performance of the Wi-Drive is good. Copying data between the drive and the device is not that fast due to the use of WiFi, but it serves its purpose.

The real question is do you want to wait for the next version of the Wi-Drive. There is really no telling on when the new version will come out. In the meantime, the current product is in the market, it works great, and is ready to give you more storage than your device currently has. I've taken the Wi-Drive on vacations and it is nice to carry the additional storage and not worry about what files I need to take or remove. If you're stuck with a device with no external storage and need more file space, the Wi-Drive is an excellent addition to your mobile arsenal.


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