Synology is best known for making network-attached storage (NAS) hardware. But the company’s new BeeDrive is something a little different. It’s still a storage product, but it’s a pocket-sized, portable SSD that’s designed for backing up and syncing your data across devices.
Available now for $120 and up, the portable SSD works with software that offers real-time backup and sync for selected folders on your computer. But it also lets you backup photos and videos from Android or iOS devices over WiFi.
In order to backup data over WiFi, a BeeDrive will need to be plugged into a computer though – it doesn’t have its own wireless radio or battery, so it’s pretty much just a dumb storage device when it’s unplugged.
But when plugged in, BeeDrive’s software can:
- Automatically backup selected folders
- Detect changes in files within those folders in real-time and save only things that have changed since the last backup
- Sync files between multiple computers
- Pair with up to 5 mobile devices to using a mobile app to backup photos and videos (over a local network, if your iOS and Android devices are connected to the same network as your PC)
There’s also a BeeDrop feature for sending mobile photos and videos to a computer manually.
At launch Synology offers support for Windows, iOS, and Android, but macOS support is said to be coming soon. The company also notes there are some limitations to its BeeDrive backup software. For example, you cannot backup or sync data from network drives or external drives like USB flash drives or SD cards. And “renaming or moving folders on BeeDrive while BeeDrive for desktop is not running can result in the loss of file versions in those folders.”
Overall, BeeDrive doesn’t sound like anything truly unique in the portable storage & backup space, but it is a new product category for Synology.
BeeDrive measure 2.56″ x 2.56″ x 0.59″ and weighs 1.52 ounces. It has a USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C connector with support for data transfer speeds up to 1050MB/s). The little SSD comes with a 3 year warranty and Synology offers models with 1TB or 2TB of storage.