The CloudFTP device is a small battery-powered portable USB file server for your mobile devices.
The device itself is remarkably simple with just a USB port, a built in Wi-Fi access point, and a small power button. The device’s internal operating system is very robust and can accept any type of USB hard drive or USB key, allowing any of your mobile devices to connect to the drive as if it were a remote network share. Simply plug the device in and turn it on. In a few moments, the device will display its Wi-Fi SSID so you can connect with your mobile devices. You can also configure the device to connect to a specific wireless network instead of serving its own hotspot.
Going to the home page of the device, you can see a listing of the drive (or drives) attached, and explore their contents via a web-based interface. If your device supports it, you can even select files such as music and videos to transfer to your local device to play directly via browser download or the built-in Windows network share.
Built into the device is also a DLNA server to allow DLNA clients to stream content. A prime example is using this device to stream video to an iPad using an DLNA player. In testing though, I’ve found that the DLNA server has some implementation issues and may have trouble with some clients.
In the latest versions of the software, there is new support for customized third party apps (though there are none as of yet) and beta support for the Picture Transfer Protocol which would allow you to capture photos directly from a camera without the need for a card reader.
The CloudFTP has a five-hour battery that recharges via a disappointingly proprietary USB cable, but does charge fairly quickly from drained.
Being primarily web based, CloudFTP requires the use of an HTML5 browser, and is only tested for use under Apple Safari or Google Chrome. This is disappointing as sometimes these are not the default browser for the user.
Use Cases for CloudFTP
As for a use case, I found it was pretty handy while traveling for business. I can easily attach a hard drive to it, and turn it on mid flight to give my tablet hundreds of gigs of available media to consume. Or if I need to transfer many files to a co-worker on site, I can load up the hard drive and everyone else can access it via the built in Windows network share.
Despite having a few rough usability spots in its web interface, CloudFTP is a simple product that works fairly well and does exactly what it was designed to do, provide a wireless hotspot with file sharing for your USB disk drives.
CloudFTP is available from HyperShop for $99.95 in black or white.