Tiny flash drive is also durable

September 4, 2009 By Craig Crossman
Verbatim TUFF-'N'-TINY USB drive

Just the other day, my son was looking for his flash drive that is a requirement for all college freshmen. His mom was the one who found it due to the loud clanging noise coming from the automatic dryer. Yes, he had neglected to empty his pockets before washing his jeans. I had to say goodbye to a 1-gigabyte flash drive that cost me 50 bucks when I bought it for him when he started high school. Actually I was amazed it lasted that long.

Flash drives are ideal for anyone wanting to carry along any kind of data without having to lug around a . They store gigabytes of data and require no power to maintain all of it. The cost of flash drives has come way down as well. Typical capacities range from a on up, the average usually are 2, 4 and 8 gigabytes. But until now, the one flash drive weakness was their fragility. These are complex little devices with their delicate components stored within some kind of brittle plastic casing. But Verbatim has come up with their new line of TUFF-'N'-TINY USB drives that address not only the fragility problem, but also make them even more transportable.

The TUFF-'N'-TINY drive is almost as thin as a penny! That's pretty amazing since the thinnest flash drive I've seen to date is at least four times thicker. The actual dimensions of the TUFF-'N'-TINY is about 1 inch long, a half inch wide and about the thickness of a penny. But although its physical size may be small, the storage capacities offered are keeping pace with the fatter versions.

The other amazing thing about the TUFF-'N'-TINY is how tough it actually is. For starters, it's completely sealed and doesn't sport the typical metal USB plug used by other flash drives. The USB plug is one of the weakest points on a . The drive is open to damage at the vulnerable point where the body of the flash drives meets with the metal USB plug. Too often will you see damaged drives with their plugs bent out of shape or completely snapped off because too much pressure was applied in a perpendicular direction while it was plugged in. The TUFF-'N'-TINY's makes its connection on its underside which has its electronic connections exposed. When you insert it into a USB port, the connection is made directly.

Being sealed leaves it impervious to water and dirt damage as well. You can drop the TUFF-'N'-TINY into a glass of water, dry it off and it's ready to be used. Drop it on the beach, keep it in your dusty pocket, it doesn't matter. It's sealed so nothing gets in our out except your computer data when you need it.

So now both of my sons now carry their TUFF-'N'-TINY drives wherever they go and if their mom does find it again in the washing machine, this time I won't be worried about it. They're tough, they're tiny and they're ready to wear (they also come with a lanyard).

The TUFF-'N'-TINY comes in an orange 2GB ($19.95), green 4GB ($29.99) and purple 8GB ($49.99) capacity. The TUFF-'N'-TINY is compatible with Windows, Macintosh and Linux OS computers.

(c) 2009, McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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3.5 / 5 (2) Sep 04, 2009
It's amazing how technology miniturizes things so quickly, but geez I feel like I'm going to swallow things like this. Hell why don't we just do that? Make these things implantable and use RF so you never lose your data and can literally put the data into your hands. Plus, you'd feel like a jedi waving your hands around to influence machines.
5 / 5 (2) Sep 04, 2009
How were flash drives ever fragile? They were always the most durable medium ive come across. Drop them, throw them, dunk them in water - they will survive. I don't know why you thought it was destroyed by a simple wash, just dry it out fully and it will work.
5 / 5 (1) Sep 05, 2009
This is a blatant commercial. As said above, flash drives are already tough. My 3 year old drive has accidentally been through the washer 2 times and still functions.
5 / 5 (1) Sep 05, 2009
I Agree with everyone above... I dropped mine while getting into my car one day and did realize it... about 3 months later I see it sitting beside my driveway... smashed to bit (I must have run it over) It was the rainy months too.. I didnt think it would actually work but I chanced it and... whaddayah know... aside form the casing being gone it works just fine!
not rated yet Sep 08, 2009
Ive seen plenty with teh USB connector broken off, but most needed some pretty hefty damage for that to happen. I've washed some many time. My wife dropped one in her coffee. I cleaned it in the dishwasher, let it dry and it still works today.

I love these things more than CD's now, and they're almost as cheap. I'll bet a game system adopts them for their games soon. Not only are they large, they can work as a dongle to combat piracy!
not rated yet Sep 09, 2009
This looks VERY expensive in light of the other hi-cap drives available.

If you want really tiny, go for micro-sdhc.. even with a dongle they are very small in size while being inexpensive compared to this product.

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