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SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive Luxe 256GB Review

It’s back to school week for the kids, though my wife (a teacher) was back to school last week doing professional development sessions and setting up her classroom. One thing that has made her job a little easier is having the ability to work on lesson plans and draft presentations at home, popping them onto a USB thumb drive and then taking them to school. We use a PC at home, and she has a MacBook at work, plus uses an iPhone in between. What connects them all together with ease? The SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive Luxe.

Ordinary USB thumb drives in the past have been so slow and just have the one standard USB connector. They are also easily lost in the bottom of my wife’s Hermione bag (Harry Potter reference). However, this SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive Luxe is 50mm long, is a decent weight for a thumb drive, and features two connectors – lightning for the iPhone/iPad and USB-C for PC/MacBook. It’s so easy to use and does not require an internet connection to transfer files.

When plugged into your iPhone, it prompts you to download the iXpand Drive app, and once installed it’s as easy as drag and drop. You can also set it to automatically back up your files and photos each time it’s plugged in. It does take a long time to transfer files this way, and you do need to keep the app in focus while transferring. Thankfullly though it has a pause and resume function, so you won’t lose progress if you have to duck off to do something else.

In the past, I have had major issues in trying to manually backup my thousands of photos from iPhone to PC. The USB cable method was so slow, and the download would randomly pause for ages, ending up having an error. I would have to work out which photo it got up to and re-copy/paste a new set. This error loop would happen until I get frustrated and give up, and just ended up buying some iCloud storage.

My iPhone is almost at capacity on the basic iCloud package, so rather than paying for extra storage, I am just going to back them up to this drive and save the money (for the next Steam sale of course). This review unit is the 256GB variant so has plenty of space for photos, videos and all-important games, but there are also 64GB and 128GB variants. If you are worried about privacy and losing the drive or having it stolen, it’s very easy to use the iXpand Drive app to password protect your files, and this is compatible with iOS 10.0.2 and higher, Mac OS X v10.9 and higher, and Windows 8, 10 and 11.

The stylish swivel design is smooth and snaps into position solidly, and the plastic cap protects the connectors when you toss the drive in your bag or pocket. The other end has a keyring hole which makes this easy to take it with you on the go. My wife thinks it is the ducks nuts and her teacher friends are super jealous. I am very happy with this SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive Luxe and would recommend it for anyone utilising USB storage and backups. The SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive Luxe can be purchased from Harvey Norman with the following costs: 64GB – $98, 128GB – $119, and 256GB (reviewed) – $198.

This review utilised a unit provided by Fleishman-Hillard. For more information on this and other back to school products from Western Digital and SanDisk, head here.


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