Aug 15, 2014
Years ago, as an upcoming tech feen, I reached a major milestone. I was rocking the awesome Palm Tungsten T5, was proclaiming publicly about preferring my phone and PDA devices separate, and enjoyed the PalmOS-WinMo wars. Then, one fateful day, I found a huge sale going on. It was for a then-massive 1GB Kingston SD card that could help me expand the T5 with ginormous external space.
I had to sign up for Google Checkout, which helped tie me in further to the Google ecosystem. That card literally opened up a new world to me, and I learned Kingston is a brand worth using. Since then, the company has expanded along with the entire mobile sector, and has stuff out like its MobileLite Wireless G2 Card Reader.
With regards to mobility, this device makes a lot of sense. It is an update to the original MobileLite Wireless G1; in theory, it allows for folks to access data from SD, micro SD cards and USB sticks on the go via the device’s built-in network. On paper, this can be useful functionality to have whether or not one has a device with external storage capabilities.
But all the theoretical functionality is moot if the device isn’t, well, portable. The review package came with the main unit, USB cable and an SD card adapter and paperwork (Kingston also provided a 64 GB micro-SD card to fully test the unit). The MobileLite thankfully doesn’t carry a huge physical footprint, being similar in size visually to the HTC One that was used it with; officially, it comes in at 5 x 3.1 x 0.75 inches and 6.03 ounces. The device is mostly black with stark white band frame around the sides; the sides house LED icons, power button, a reset hole and micro-USB port on the one long side, and a full ethernet port on the opposite long side. On the opposite side, one finds a slot for full SD cad and a full USB port too. All in all, it feels well-fused, and is quite pocketable.
To use it, we charged it up and fired it on, and then we downloaded the companion Kingston MobileLite app from the Play Store. The app provides an interface to connect to the device’s wi-fi network. Connecting it was finicky at first, but it fixed itself, and after that it was fairly easy to use.
While connected, the unit shows the internal memory of the device on its network. The external memory card wasn’t an option, but the onboard memory shows, and it’s possible to move data back and forth. It officially supports, FAT, exFat, NFTS and FAT32, so that is one less thing to worry about. I especially like the streaming functionality that allows for one to access media directly from the card reader. It can also be used as a wi-fi bridge via the ethernet port, and even works as a mobile charger (we found it works best with a full charge; it was able to recharge the HTC almost two times).
One can’t help but love products that do what they do well, and take on extra functionality; this is where the MobileLite excels. At $54.00 (per Amazon), it isn’t prohibitively priced either, especially when one considers the Kingston name.