The Kingston Wi-Drive works by creating a local Wi-Fi network and three Android or iOS devices can connect to it. It can also create a bridge between the Wi-Fi router and tablet/phone, allowing the internet to be used directly via the Wi-Drive’s network.
The drive battery takes around 2 hours to charge from flat. The green light will flash when it is charging. When fully charged it will stop flashing and stay lit. We tested the drive with both an Intel based Apple Macintosh running OSX 10.8 and an Intel Windows 7 64 bit system. No problems copying and handling file transfers with either system.
When connected via the supplied USB cable, the device will automatically turn on and charge and the drive will appear in both operating systems. Larger files will take a little time to copy over, as the Wi-Drive is not USB 3.0 capable.
We paired the Kingston Wi-Drive 64GB Drive with an Apple iPad 3 and a Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 tablet, both running fully updated operating systems.
When the Wi-Drive is first turned on, and not connected to a computer – there are two small blue LED lights which will activate after a minute or two. One is a transmission indicator and the other is the internet access icon. Battery life is indicated from green for 51% and above. It will turn amber for battery life ranging between 25% and 50%. It will then turn red for less than 25%.
First, download the Wi-Drive software for iOS or Android. Windows 8 is not yet supported.
We simply searched for ‘Kingston’ on both iOS and Android App Stores to locate the software. This is a free download and is very small and quick to install.
The Kingston Wi-Drive will become visible a couple of minutes after it is turned on. There is no password needed by default and we had no problems connecting to the network with the iPad 3.
If you have the Kingston Wi-Drive enabled and it is transmitting the Wi-Fi signal it will appear as a ‘Wi-Drive’ in the Kingston application as shown above. Simply press this to view all the files on the Wi-Drive.
We were able to play the .mov file and view JPG files easily enough, but the MKV file didn’t seem to be supported on the iPad. Pressing the file did nothing.
We also tested with a plethora of MP3 files, and experienced no problems.
We had no problems linking the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 to the Kingston Wi-Drive either. No password, and a good speed, even with a wall between the Galaxy Note 10.1 and Wi-Drive. There is no point in detailed reporting on long distance tests, as the Wi-Drive is designed to be carried in a pocket close to the devices you pair with it.
We did find the tablets would lose the signal after a 55 foot distance, although this is actually very impressive.
The Wi-Drive software works identically on both iOS and Android platforms. All files appeared instantly in the submenu as shown above.
The JPG files and MOV files opened without a hitch. Additionally, when we tried to play the MKV file on the Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1 it worked, however it did initially pop up a warning that it would need third party software. Intelligently, it passed over the playback to an MKV supported software package we had installed outside the Kingston application, which was very impressive.
We managed to stream high quality 720p video successfully to 3 mobile devices without any sign of stuttering or playback issues.
Overall, I found the experience better on the Android tablet, as I could get a huge variety of movie files to play easily. The iPad did not handle MKV and some other video formats, no matter what I tried.
Battery life is around 4 hours and 45 minutes, when constantly streaming media content to either iOS or Android devices. This is really quite impressive, considering. After several hours of playback the Kingston Wi-Drive does get rather warm to touch, although it didn’t seem to have a negative impact on the device at all over the course of a week.