Review: SanDisk's New Lightning/USB 3.0 iXpand Flash Drive Offers Easy Transfers and Backups in a Slim Package

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SanDisk's iXpand Flash Drive, which is able to transfer files between an iPhone and a PC, has been around since 2014, giving iPhone and iPad users a simple way to back up their photos, offload extra content, and expand the storage space on their devices.


Today, SanDisk is ready to debut a second-generation iXpand Flash Drive, introducing the same file transfer functionality in a smaller package with faster USB 3.0 transfer speeds and a revamped app that makes it easier to use. Available in 16, 32, 64, and 128GB capacities, the iXpand can back up a full photo library and store a wide range of media files that can be viewed directly from the drive.

Design

The new iXpand Flash Drive, made of metal and a flexible rubber, material, has a curved design with a Lightning connector on one end and a USB connector on the other end. When plugged into an iPhone, the USB connector wraps around the back, allowing the iPhone to be used as normal while it's plugged in.


Design wise, the iXpand Flash Drive works well. When plugged in, the iXpand sticks out from the Lightning connector about an inch, but it doesn't seem to interfere with normal usage. It makes it more awkward to hold an iPhone or stick it in a pocket with the dongle plugged in, but it's not difficult to adjust to.


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Article Link: Review: SanDisk's New Lightning/USB 3.0 iXpand Flash Drive Offers Easy Transfers and Backups in a Slim Package
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,700
6,224
I'm a rolling stone.
Ha...ha, USB 3 speeds, 70 MB/s (0.56 Gb/s) is not that fast at all, USB 3 can go up to about 5 Gb/s.
Not so cheap either, $50 for 16 GB is quite a lot nowadays.
 
Last edited:

Bhatu

macrumors regular
Apr 1, 2013
167
85
Biggest bummer is its app interface. Sandisk app copies all the files to its own folder and then copies it to the drive. In order to backup 4GB of data you need >4 GB of free space for app, else it crashes and you end up with two copies of same data.
 
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jongampark

macrumors newbie
Nov 28, 2012
8
0
For people who don't like to use cloud service like Google drive or iCloud, or are situated that they can't access network, it can be good solution....

But are there many of them?
 

Ziggy...

macrumors newbie
Nov 28, 2011
20
61
Methuen, MA
Ha...ha, USB 3 speeds, 70 MB/s (0.56 Mb/s) is not that fast at all, USB 3 can go up to about 5 Mb/s.
Not so cheap either, $50 for 16 GB is quite a lot nowadays.
You need to get you numbers straight... 70 MB/s is not equal to 0.56Mb/s and USB 3 can go much much faster than 5 Mb/s...70 MB/s is 560 Mbps and USB 3 maximum theoretical speed is 5 Gb/s or 0.625 GB/s
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,700
6,224
I'm a rolling stone.
You need to get you numbers straight... 70 MB/s is not equal to 0.56Mb/s and USB 3 can go much much faster than 5 Mb/s...70 MB/s is 560 Mbps and USB 3 maximum theoretical speed is 5 Gb/s or 0.625 GB/s
You are completely right, didn't even notice until you replied.

Normally I never make these mistakes and sometimes reply to people that they have the numbers wrong, feel a bit stupid now.:oops:
 
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dudeblue2016

macrumors newbie
Apr 6, 2016
5
2
starting at $50 for the 16GB??? so if i buy a $400 SE, then i need at least $50 for backing up the same phone with no extra space for the future, that's $450 for still 16GB worth of space....might as well bite the bullet and pay $100 over the $400 for the added space on the phone.....i'll pass this one.
 

justperry

macrumors G4
Aug 10, 2007
10,700
6,224
I'm a rolling stone.
starting at $50 for the 16GB??? so if i buy a $400 SE, then i need at least $50 for backing up the same phone with no extra space for the future, that's $450 for still 16GB worth of space....might as well bite the bullet and pay $100 over the $400 for the added space on the phone.....i'll pass this one.

It's not meant to be a backup, it's meant to be a transfer medium from iPhone to PC.

But, I don't get it either, just connect your iPhone to a computer and it will back up, hell, you don't even need to AFAIK, you can sync over WIFI.
 

Shirasaki

macrumors G4
May 16, 2015
10,001
3,878
For people who don't like to use cloud service like Google drive or iCloud, or are situated that they can't access network, it can be good solution....

But are there many of them?
There are many of them. The real problem is the price/capacity of such disk.
 

Kajje

macrumors 6502a
Dec 6, 2012
719
956
Asia
With 50GB iCloud space costing a dollar per month, the $90 dollar Sandisk will save me money in just 7 years. After that it's pure profit! I'm so going to buy one of these.
 

coder12

macrumors 6502a
Jun 28, 2010
512
3
Great idea but...

What happens when Apple inevitably phases out the Lightning connector in favour of something that will make the phone a lot more thin?
Hopefully the same thing Apple did when they phased out the 30-pin connector. Release an adapter for compatibility.

I still have a fair number of 30-pin devices that I use with my lightning devices; the lightning adapter is only a minor setback.
 

l00pback

macrumors regular
May 28, 2010
134
131
Great idea but...

What happens when Apple inevitably phases out the Lightning connector in favour of something that will make the phone a lot more thin?
Or, equally as plausible (arguable more so):

What happens when Apple keeps the Lightning connector for many years?

Apple seems to be pretty heavily invested in the Lightning connector. I suspect they don't have plans to change it any time soon.
 
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kwiky

macrumors member
Aug 8, 2011
44
0
Great idea but...

What happens when Apple inevitably phases out the Lightning connector in favour of something that will make the phone a lot more thin?
By then the storage of the phones should have higher capacity than what something like this offers anyway. I'd almost put money on it you'll see Sandisk stop developing the app before you see lightning go away. I'd be shocked if an app like that makes if through 1-2 iOS versions.
 

joe-h2o

macrumors 6502a
Jun 24, 2012
997
445
Great idea but...

What happens when Apple inevitably phases out the Lightning connector in favour of something that will make the phone a lot more thin?
Given that they have changed the connector once since 2003, if they keep up at that same frantic, breakneck pace then you can expect a new connector around 2022.

It's "inevitable". *eyeroll*
 
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rekhyt

macrumors 65816
Jun 20, 2008
1,127
78
Part of the old MR guard.
Given that they have changed the connector once since 2003, if they keep up at that same frantic, breakneck pace then you can expect a new connector around 2022.

It's "inevitable". *eyeroll*
MagSafe 1 --> MagSafe 2 --> USB Type C
Firewire --> Mini DP --> Thunderbolt --> Thunderbolt 2 --upcoming MBP 14" and 16"--> Thunderbolt 3
 

joe-h2o

macrumors 6502a
Jun 24, 2012
997
445
MagSafe 1 --> MagSafe 2 --> USB Type C
Firewire --> Mini DP --> Thunderbolt --> Thunderbolt 2 --upcoming MBP 14" and 16"--> Thunderbolt 3
When did Apple install MagSafe, Thunderbolt, USB-C and Mini-DP connectors on the iPhone?

I've been buying the ones that didn't include it! No one told me!

Edit: also, in your attempt to "burn" me (is that what the kids say?) you listed Mini-DP > Thunderbolt > Thunderbolt 2 as three different items in your "change of connector" list.

You should probably go and look at a Mini-DP cable, and a Thunderbolt cable, and a Thunderbolt 2 cable. I'll wait here patiently while you explain the difference in mechanical connection between them.
 
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rekhyt

macrumors 65816
Jun 20, 2008
1,127
78
Part of the old MR guard.
When did Apple install MagSafe, Thunderbolt, USB-C and Mini-DP connectors on the iPhone?

I've been buying the ones that didn't include it! No one told me!

Edit: also, in your attempt to "burn" me (is that what the kids say?) you listed Mini-DP > Thunderbolt > Thunderbolt 2 as three different items in your "change of connector" list.

You should probably go and look at a Mini-DP cable, and a Thunderbolt cable, and a Thunderbolt 2 cable. I'll wait here patiently while you explain the difference in mechanical connection between them.
In regards to your question about 'burning'... No, that's not what people say any more.

I'll revisit the flowchart:
Mobile: FireWire > 30-pin > Lightning (8-pin)
Mac (Energy): Proprietary > MagSafe 1 --> MagSafe 2 --> USB Type C
Mac (Connectivity): FireWire > Mini DisplayPort (Mini DisplayPort, Thunderbolt 1, Thunderbolt 2) > USB Type-C (Thunderbolt 3)

Go on, I'm listening.
 

joe-h2o

macrumors 6502a
Jun 24, 2012
997
445
In regards to your question about 'burning'... No, that's not what people say any more.

I'll revisit the flowchart:
Mobile: FireWire > 30-pin > Lightning (8-pin)
Mac (Energy): Proprietary > MagSafe 1 --> MagSafe 2 --> USB Type C
Mac (Connectivity): FireWire > Mini DisplayPort (Mini DisplayPort, Thunderbolt 1, Thunderbolt 2) > USB Type-C (Thunderbolt 3)

Go on, I'm listening.

Mobile: You're including the original iPod in the mobile category to try and make your argument work? Ok, then we have to extend the timeframe out, since the only time the connector was different to the 30 pin dock was on the original 1st gen iPod in 2001. After that, the 30 pin dock was used which has a pinout that supports USB and Firewire. You're being inconsistent here, since if you're including the original 1st gen iPod but not the iPod shuffle I'm going to assume you're just trying to pull out ******** to make your argument work.

Mac (Energy): USB-C and MagSafe 2 are not one after the other, they are concurrent on two different products. You might as well have rolled the Mac and iPod into the same category! Oh wait, you did originally. I think I see why your argument is so stupid.

Mac (connectivity): Again, you've stated that USB-C has replaced the MDP connector, yet Apple haven't actually shipped any TB3 devices yet. Which device in Apple's lineup are you stating has replaced its MDP Thunderbolt 2 connectivity with a USB-C port? You're just making **** up now.

I will concede that yes, MDP replaced Firewire 800 as the high speed bus of choice, but the two busses overlapped for a time (TB was introduced in early 2011 and the Firewire port wasn't dropped from the MBP until mid 2012 with the introduction of the retina MBP).

In other words, your original argument, which seemed to be some sort of dig about "constant port changes" on the iPhone is just... total bovine excrement that you've only heaped more bovine waste product on top of in your attempt to defend it.

I haven't seen a sick burn this radical since Kriss Kross made us Jump, Jump.
 
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