Months ago, Kingston teased with us with a beta device that was not necessarily going to hit the market. Now, we’re happy to announce that the Kingston MobileLite Wireless is officially available. This unique device is really two products in one. First it’s your run-of-the-mill, super convenient, portable USB backup battery–great for charging your phone and accessories on the go. The other half of the MobileLite is a wireless storage hub for your Smart Phone or Tablet. Simply plug in a flash drive and/or SD card and voilas–you have complete wireless access to all the files on any iOS or Android device.
MobileLite is about the size of two iPhone 5s stacked on top of each other. It weighs less than one iPhone, at 98 grams. The design is reminiscent of the original iPhone with it’s aluminum back and silver of black plastic. The MobileLite is actually all plastic, which helps keep the weight to a minimum. It’s still pretty durable.
The device has two storage ports: USB and SD. It comes with a micro SD adapter. SD cards recess completely into the device which is awesome; it’s like adding built-in storage. The USB port can read low power USB devices like flash drives. There’s also a micro-USB port for charging MobileLite, 3 status LEDs, and one button.
The MobileLite Wireless contains an 1800mAh battery. There’s a USB port that fits any USB cable and charges almost any USB device. 1800mAh is enough battery to fully charge an iPhone 5. There’s a battery status LED, and you can get more detailed battery capacity using the MobileLite app. The same USB port can be used to plug in a flash drive for wireless access.
The MobileLite emits its own WiFi network that you can connect to like any other wireless internet connection. Once connected, you have complete access to the SD card (or micro SD) and/or the USB flash drive. Kingston has their MobileLite app for Android and iOS, but any connected device can still access the MobileLite file system from a browser. Three devices can access MobileLite at the same time. Files can be viewed/streamed, added, and removed. On iOS you can only upload files in your photostream or files you’ve offlined in the MobileLite app.
The app is pretty intuitive. It’s not super polished, but it can definitely get the job done. There’s an iPhone app, iPad app, and Android app. Thankfully the MobileLite can connect to other WiFi networks. This means you won’t lose internet access when you connect to it. The MobileLite also works as a wired USB/card reader.
Verdict and Recap
Think of the MobileLite Wireless as a memory card and USB reader that you can wirelessly access from mobile devices. Plug it into the computer and it functions as a regular card reader. Plug it into your phone and you have yourself a handy charger. When would you use the MobileLite Wireless? Say you’re on vacation and want to send out photos from your point-and-shoot or DSLR camera, without a computer there’s no easier way then MobileLite to get access to those files. You can even back up your entire SD card to a USB drive. Another neat use for MobileLite is to forget about constantly syncing your phone and tablet with the computer to add new media, just use flash drives or memory cards and stream (or offline) an unlimited amount of movies and media. It’s especially useful for phones and tablets that don’t have a lot of available storage space.
The Kingston MobileLite Wireless is kind of a niche product. You may not always require wireless file transfers, but it’s a nice accessory to keep in your backpack. The built-in battery backup makes it super convenient. Pricing in at $58.21 from Amazon.com, it’s a really neat product to keep around. There are less expensive backup batteries, but there’s not much out there that offers the same wireless storage functionality, especially at that price point.
The Good: Built-in backup battery, Can connect to directly or through existing wireless network, Light, Durable, Finally a way to transfer files between flash storage and iOS
The Bad: No built-in storage, Can’t transfer to mobile using wire, App could be more polished