Link Power Drive by Imation is a combination of the two most in-demand iPhone accessories – portable storage and power supply devices. While Apple products are applauded for impeccable design and ground breaking technological features, battery life of its products is far from perfect. Consequently, iPhone users can’t leave home without a power cord and Link provides everything you need in one small, travel-friendly device. It’s a “perfect square” outfitted with two power cords; one with a USB connector and the other with a lightning connector for iPhone 5/6. I appreciate that the cords are built into the device which eliminates the need to carry multiple items. However, the power cords are not generous in length. To use the drive your phone and/or computer must be very close by. The cords tuck away easily too, in perforated channels that run along the side of the casing. Link can charge iPhone 5/6 and iPod Touch devices. The USB cord enables charging of the Link device itself and transfer of data to and from a computer. Link fits easily in your handbag, backpack and even the palm of your hand. It weighs 3.8 ounces and measures 2.9 x 2.5 x 0.9 inches. You can also set it up display-style while streaming directly from the drive because Link features a tray which pulls out to hold your mobile. The tray is seamlessly built into Link and slides out for use. What a slick little design element.
Link offers 16GB, 32GB or 64GB of external personal storage space to backup files, pictures and videos on your iOS device. I tested the 16GB version for this review. The app, Imation Link, facilitates data transfer and is available online and in the App Store. Although it’s intuitive and simple to use, the app contains a user user guide. The 30 page manual is comprehensive and well designed but available only in PDF format, a slight drawback for those who prefer using online help forums.
I didn’t experience any complications finding or installing the app. Once the device is connected and powered on (Finding the power butter n can be a challenge. It’s inconspicuously located along on the side of the casing.), a pop-up message appears to confirm the connection between the app and the device. When this happens, you simply click ‘OK’ and setup is complete. For some reason, my iPhone 6 plus sporadically recognizes Link Power Drive. Sometimes I sat for as long as 15 minutes with the drive connected before I received the pop-up message. Another drawback is when the screen saver is activated, the drive loses connectivity and it has to be reconnected. When opened for the first time, it asked for permission to use my phone’s microphone and camera. This section is short because it directly mirrors the amount of time required to get the device setup – it was quick.
Whether the device is linked to your mobile device for file sharing or not, it will charge the device. Once fully charged all four of the LED lights on the button are illuminated. Transferring files onto the device was simple and seamless. From the computer, you can simply drag and drop files onto the Power Drive. I also appreciate that there is already an established directory on the drive which includes folders for Contacts, Documents, Music, Photos and Videos. You can build on that structure by adding sub-folders as needed. Transfer speed is definitely an area of opportunity. It took 2 minutes to transfer 1.18 GB of data which included 32 files (16 audio and 16 music videos). The files streamed from the drive seamlessly with no buffering. I sporadically encountered an error message saying that the connected device was not supported. I updated to the latest version of the app and it continued to pop up from time to time. See the screen shot in this post.