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LaCie Fuel Review: A wireless hard drive for iPad & iPhone

Turn your iPad or iPhone into a streaming powerhouse with a huge 1TB of extra storage for your iOS device

MainCompatibility • OS X 10.6 or higher • iOS 5.1.1 or higher

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Price: £139.90/$179.99

When looking for extra external storage or a media hub, what are you looking for? Portability, simplicity, value and even a splash of style would all make a list of requirements. The LaCie Fuel undoubtedly fits the bill and sells itself by offering compatibility with iPad, iPhone and Mac. However, the fact that it offers integrated Wi-Fi and USB 3.0 connection means the Fuel has much more to offer.

For those who want a drive that has style as well as substance, the aptly named Fuel has this. We’re not sure what came first: the name or the design. The LaCie is styled much like a petrol can, including a carry hook/handle. Alongside the design, the shape of the Fuel makes it stand apart. How often do you see a portable drive that is square? We can tell you – not very often. The unit measures in at 115 x 115 x 23mm and weighs in at 300g, so is perfect for portability. The casing is made of thick plastic and gives off an air of authority, telling you the drive is well protected.

The case boasts a USB 3.0 port, a power switch and a couple of indicator lights to show the current state of the battery life and Wi-Fi connection. Getting connected to the LaCie Fuel, via Wi-Fi, for the first time is not as intuitive as we would have hoped. The process was a little convoluted, with the user needing to download the associated application, connecting to the device before finally connecting to the net.

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Once connected, the Fuel is ready. The Seagate Media App is the intermediary for sharing. The neatly laid out app presents content from the Fuel. The alternative is to view what is on the device. If you want to add more content, the quick and easy way is to use drag and drop via USB. The Fuel is equipped with a USB 3.0, making transfers quick and easy. The Fuel enables up to five devices to be connected at once but, as you might expect, the performance doesn’t quite match a single connection. Video playback was smooth and consistent with no lag or loading animations. There is more than enough room for most video collections, with 1TB of storage. If this is not enough, there is always the 2TB model…

Buy now?

Pros Unique design, small footprint and sturdy build quality

Cons The setup process could have been more intuitive

Orange 4 Stars