The Bottom Line
The iXpand lineup has covered many solutions over the years including battery cases, wireless storage nodes and flash drives. It has also come a long way from that large sliding form factor we reviewed in 2015.
It's been quite some time since we last had an iXpand product in the lab. With that said, the latest might be SanDisk's best as the form factor is more flexible than ever. Offered with 128 and 256GB capacities the drive is 1/3 the size of the original with a full metal design and rotating cap. The iXpand Flash Drive Go does take advantage of USB 3.0 offering quick transfers from your PC or mac with a Lightning port on the other for iPad and iPhone compatibility.
Compatibility includes iOS 10.0.2 or higher along with macOS and Windows for USB 3.0. MSRP of the 256GB iXpand Flash Drive Go comes in at $89.99 with a two-year warranty.
Packaging for the iXpand follow what you would typically see from a flash drive or memory card. We have capacity listed top right with features and the drive centered.
The back goes into more detail with features and use cases. Warranty is listed at the bottom.
The drive itself has come into its own finally with a sleek new form factor. The single piece metal design is much more intuitive and above we have it with the Type-C port exposed.
Flipping the plastic cover, we reveal the Lightning port.
The iXpand app has been through many solutions and is still used with the latest Flash Drive Go.
Setup of the drive take only a few moments and after you have this overview screen showing you the capacity of your phone and the drive. Down below you have the option to copy files between devices along with a file manager and backup software.
The setup menu offers help for the device should you need it along with information in the about section. You can change the drive name and clear the cache and enable security if you so choose.
Above, we have the file manager showing you the files on your device with a switchable tab at the top to move quickly from the drive to onboard phone storage.
Running the iXpand through a quick bit of testing, we see 90MB/s read and 53 MB/s write.
Closing this out, the new iXpand in my eyes is the best to date, it offers an extremely sleek form factor without the scorpion tail and top-notch build quality overall. Adding to this is the plastic cap that while attached doesn't get in the way of you connecting the device on either end.
The app, as always is still very easy to use and setup and offers just enough features for the casual iPhone/iPad user. Backup and Restore enables you to schedule automatic backups of your device when the drive is connected including media and contacts. The file manager lets you quickly move between the drive and your onboard device storage and copy lets you handle individual transfers.
Performance of the drive is quite good for an iOS solution; I was able to get 90MB/s read and 50 MB/s write out of it which matches the last generation. Pricing is fair for the 256GB capacity, coming in at $89.99 considering last generation had the same price at 64GB.
Tyler's Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Crosshair VIII Formula X570 (buy from Amazon)
- CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3600 (buy from Amazon)
- RAM: Corsair Vengeance 16GB 2x8GB DDR4 3600 (buy from Amazon)
- Cooler: Corsair Hydro H60 (buy from Amazon)
- Case: Corsair Carbide 275R (buy from Amazon)
- OS Storage: Corsair MP600 1TB (buy from Amazon)
- Power Supply: Corsair RM850x (buy from Amazon)
- OS: Microsoft Windows 10 (buy from Amazon)
SanDisk's iXpand Flash Drive Go offers a fantastic sleek design and ample capacity for backing up today's high capacity iOS products.