After releasing a fun new design in a handful of colors for their My Passport external hard drives last year, Western Digital is keeping its foot on the gas pedal. Today, they’re announcing SSD options, which will be both lighter and faster than the HDD options from last year.
Being a solid state drive, the main benefit is going to be speed. It’s going to be a huge difference — while the HDD drives from last year had transfer speeds of about 120 MB/s, the SSDs should get up to 515 MB/s. SSDs also lack moving parts, which make them a bit more durable, as well — WD says the drives will survive drops of up to 6.5 feet and collisions with 1500 G of force. They also come with 256-bit AES file encryption and optional password protection.
For connectivity, WD is shipping the new SSDs with a USB 3.1 Gen 2 USB Type-C to Type-C cable, which can take full advantage of the drive’s speeds. If you don’t have a laptop that has a USB Type-C port, no worries — the drives will also ship with a full-sized Type-A adapter. The drives have also been formatted to work with both Windows and Mac, so there shouldn’t be any compatibility issues.
The SSDs have the same design as the HDDs, with diagonal ridges on the bottom half and a smooth, glossy upper half. They’re a lot smaller and lighter, which is awesome. The only bummer is that there aren’t any color options like with the HDDs — it looks like they’re just launching with a silver/black combo.
The WD My Passport SSD will be available sometime this quarter in 256 GB ($100), 512 GB ($200), and 1 TB ($400) capacities. They will all come with three-year warranties.