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Patriot Aero Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB Review
      #47278 - 11/06/14 08:01 PM

The Patriot Aero Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB is a file bank, a transfer route, a wireless streaming station and a Wi-Fi access point. The drive is designed mainly for mobile devices, especially iOS devices that lack true native file sharing options outside of iTunes syncing, to share, store and streaming files wirelessly. It supports PC, Mac, iOS and Android including full Google Play devices and Amazon Fire devices. It's also cross platform which means you can share files easily and wirelessly between iOS and Android devices. On top of that it has a 1TB hard drive to boot.



Design

The Patriot Aero Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB measures 3.9 x 5.5 x 1 inches and weighs 10.4 ounces. It comes with an AC wall charger and a USB 3.0 file transfer cable. The portable drive comes in a sturdy black casing with ports on the side, including a power button, a DC-in port and a 3.0 USB port that's also USB 2.0 compatible. The Aero has three LED lights on the front that indicate charging, Wi-Fi and drive activity status. There are four additional LED lights and a button for checking battery levels.



Features

As a file server, the Patriot Aero Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB shines with its large capacity, fast USB 3.0 and cross platform file support. The FAT32 file system ensures the drive work flawlessly with Mac and PC as well as iOS and Android devices. We tested the Aero with Mac and PC, and found it working with all easily in plug-and-play fashion. The USB 3.0 transferring speed also helps large multimedia file transfers. We also tested the Aero with iOS devices including the iPhone 6 and the iPad Air 2, and found it very convenient to share movies, photos, ebooks and more without using iTunes to sync. As long as you have the apps that can play the movie and music files or read the ebook or documents, you can download and/or play any files you've transferred to the Aero drive from your mobile devices. We've also tested it with Android devices and had similarly smooth experience.



As a wireless streaming device, the Patriot Aero Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB works reasonably smoothly though not in the best method of streaming. The Aero can stream content to up to 5 devices which is nice when you have 1TB of space and an entire family of users who want to stream something from it simultaneously. However every device has to connect to the drive as the Aero doesn't support DLNA or AirPlay via your Wi-Fi network. This also means you'll have to disconnect with your own Wi-Fi access point until you turn the Aero into an access point. The Aero does support WEP/WPA-PSK/WPA-PSK Security protocols but it'd be a lot nicer if it just joined the network instead of forcing a pass-through. The Wi-Fi pass through is very easy to set up using either the iOS or the Android Patriot Connect app. One thing to remember when you're streaming files or downloading/uploading files: be sure to plug the drive into power. If it goes to sleep you have to reconnect. Also if the drive is connected to a Mac or PC for file transfer, you can't use it for streaming at the same time.



The App

Patriot offers a free app on both iOS and Android for the Patriot Aero Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB. The app gives you an interface for downloading, uploading and streaming content, and to set up slideshows, playlist and more. You can also set up Wi-Fi pass through for the Aero to act like a Wi-Fi access point in the app.



Battery Life

The AERO Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB had built-in rechargeable Lithium Ion battery and comes with an AC adapter and a USB cable. The AC adapter is a world power compatible, 5V/2A 100-240V charger, and the package comes with two additional international AC adapter prongs. The USB cable allows recharging via a computer, but the DC-in on the Aero is a proprietary connector instead of a standard micro USB charging port. The unit takes about 6 hours to fully charge from empty, and it has 4 small LED lights and a button you can push to check the battery level. The claimed battery life is 6 hours of media streaming, and in our tests, that seemed to be on target. The standby time isn't long. So we suggest that you keep it plugged in when you can.



Conclusion

If you're using the Patriot Aero Wireless Mobile Drive 1TB for the purpose it's designed then you'll be very pleased with its large vault for all your movies, photos, documents and books that you can access anytime from your smartphone or tablet. We love the ease of use and plug and play with Mac and PC for file transfer and the USB 3.0 speed. For iOS users, it's an added bonus to grab any files from the server without going into iTunes. The wireless streaming supports up to 5 devices and streaming speed is good. We only wish that it worked via DLNA or AirPlay. The Wi-Fi pass through ensures that you don't lose the Internet connection while using the drive, but you should keep the drive alive and not let it go into sleep mode or you'll have to reconnect.

Editor's Ratings (1-5): 3.5
What's Hot: Very large drive, FAT32 file system, fast file transfer.
What's Not: No DLNA or AirPlay support.
Price: $169.99
Web site: Patriot

Reviewed by: Tong Zhang









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