Seagate launches Wireless Plus and Central networked drives
LAS VEGAS -- Seagate emphasizes wireless storage with new drives announced today at International CES that are aimed at mobile and living room use.
The highly portable Wireless Plus drive offers high-capacity storage that targets on-the-go tablet and mobile phone users. The Central is designed to complement PCs, mobile devices, and Smart TVs (starting with Samsung's).
The $200 Wireless Plus drive, available immediately, is actually the long-overdue follow-on to Seagate's GoFlex Satellite that was first introduced a year and a half-ago.
That drive suffered from often-frustrating software and a chunky size, two flaws that Seagate has now addressed with this second-generation drive. The new drive is slightly slimmer and more stylish, but still has an integrated battery (rated for up to 10 hours of use) and a DLNA- and AirPlay-capable wireless hotspot.
Based on my sneak-peek at the redesigned software, the usage experience is poised to be much smoother with this wireless drive.
Another boon: The new drive doubles capacity to 1TB, which means you'll have enough space for up to 500 high-definition movies. The drive works in conjunction with the mobile Seagate Media apps for iOS, Android, and Kindle Fire. Seagate also has an app designed for Samsung Smart TVs and Blu-ray players. And this time around, you can actually save content to the drive from a mobile device, which can be convenient for content creators moving between tablet and laptop, for example.
Seagate's new Central drive
That Smart TV app ties into Seagate's other noteworthy CES launch, the Seagate Central drive. With a sleek, horizontal box design that's designed to look, if not fit well, in a living room, the Central is a single-drive, network-attached storage box for householding multi-computer and device backups and content sharing from a single, centralized source.
The Central is designed to work smoothly with both Windows and Mac OS X, and handles continuous backup chores in the background, along with backing up photos and videos directly from Facebook.
The Central ships in March and will be available in 2TB, 3TB, and 4TB varieties (priced at $190, $320, and $260, respectively).
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