SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive (image 001)

SanDisk, an American maker of flash memory storage solutions, on Thursday announced an external flash drive that connects to iPhones and iPads via Apple’s proprietary Lightning port. The iXpand Flash Drive along with an accompanying iOS app makes it easy to transfer media and documents between an iOS device and a computer through a USB port.

Available in 16 and 64-gigabyte varieties for $59.99 and $119.99, respectively, the accessory is now available through the SanDisk webstore. The $79.99 32-gigabyte edition will be offered exclusively at Best Buy starting Sunday, November 16.

The app can be set to automatically copy on-device photos and videos to the drive when connected so you don’t need to convert your media to iOS-friendly file types.

It will also play movie files and music directly from the drive on your iPhone or iPad (.WMV, .AVI, .MKV, .MP4, .MOV video formats and common music files are supported).

SanDisk claims the iXpand has read speeds up to 13MB per second and write speeds up to 14MB per second over USB 2.0. The flexible connector works with all iPhone and iPad cases, the company said. By the way, the expand Flash Drive carries a ‘Made for iPhone’ label.

SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive (image 003)

The tiny drive is compatible with all Lightning-enabled devices such as the the iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, iPhone 5s, iPhone 5c, iPhone 5, iPad Air 2, iPad Air, iPad mini 3, iPad mini 2 and iPad mini.

SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive (image 002)

iOS 7.0 or later is required.

I think the SanDisk accessory is a compelling and affordable portable storage solution. I can easily see myself loading it up with tons of movies and photos to enjoy on my iPhone when without an Internet connection, or to free up a significant amount of storage on my device.


  • Merman123


  • Ethan Gill

    USB 2.0? what is this? The stone age?
    But seriously, I’m not going to pay over $60 for a flash drive that I can only use in one app, especially if it doesn’t support USB 3.
    It’s a cool idea, but it looks like it hasn’t really been fleshed out enough yet.

    • Blip dude

      I agree with you, but I also know that by making it USB 3.0, that would be enough excuse for them to raise the price an extra $50!!!

    • Zzyzxd

      The problem is mostly because of Electromagnetic Interference since USB 3.0 requires much higher operating clock rate. When you transferring data over USB 3.0, your phone’s signal may be interrupted or even blocked. That’s why you don’t see many phone with USB 3.0 in the market today.

      • Eswin Ramirez

        I agree.

      • JoJo

        I disagree. You are not using USB3 when connecting it to your iDevice. You use the lightning connection for that.
        There is no reason for this thing to not support USB3 on the Pc side.

      • More secure my ass. Even while remaining secure as it currently is, there could have been a central file manager like in Windows 8 RT (File Explorer) that handles ALL user file types from different devices. Probably in iOS 15, but being secure is no excuse for lacking a central file manager…

      • Yunsar

        Well what about USB 3.0 ONLY for the computer?

    • BoardDWorld

      All these gimmicky expansion options make Apples gimmicky pricing on storage tiers more worth while. Just buy the built in 128GB storage and curse a little.

  • jgr627

    Looks cool, but doesn’t look to practical with a short lighting connecter. It’s going to be hanging from my iPad if I have it on a stand and I’m trying to watch a movie. A longer skinny cable would have been much better so you could have tucked this behind an iPad

    • CPA01

      So like an OTG cable?

      The kind that Windows and Android have been using for years?

  • Blip dude

    Interestingly enough, yesterday I purchased a 32GB wireless flash drive from SanDisk at Best Buy for $30 cheaper than this. While I would’ve enjoyed the benefit of having extra storage, it’s clear now that both my iPad and iPhone have 64GB of storage with 10GB remaining, I may not need it.

    But I hope this doesn’t discourage anyone with a 16GB iOS device to purchase one of these or the wireless one I purchased, it can be a better alternative for those on a extremely tight budget.

  • Ishaan Malhotra


  • Joshua The-Legend Wiebe

    It looks like it’s time to teach grandpa the powerful benefits of wireless transfers called “The Internet” and not spend money on physical storage.

  • Guest

    I’m a cross platform user. A 32 GB kingston datatraveler duo is like 7-8$ in my country.

    • iRipoff…

      • CPA01

        You got it. Don’t buy Apple. Don’t get locked into bad practices.

  • Utrarunner5


  • Mike

    Off-topic here, but pwntunes for iOS 8 is actually free right now. Not sure how long it will last.

    • BoardDWorld

      Nope it will ask you to pay when you plug in into your computer.

  • GMUSIK805 .

    I like the idea but an adaper would be better and u can use ur own flash drive
    Also price is too expensive but i could see the benefit of haveing all my music libary in a flash drive and ipad full of games and also id be koo if they let u put apps in the flash drive

  • Dan

    Interesting product, but it’s sad to see that it’s this expensive just because it’s an Apple product. I bought the equivalent back when I had a Nexus 7 (android tablet) and the device cost 10$, was 1/10th of the size, and you could insert any microsd card. So 25$ versus 120$…

    • Dan

      the device in question

      • CPA01

        Meenova FOR THE WIN.

        That’s actually the second version. The first looks different. Still works well though.

        It’s ironic how the Apple version is horribly overpriced, ugly, lacks functional utility (gotta remove your case) and is physically enormous.

  • n0ahcruz3


  • I wonder if and when pricing for the UK will be announced. This seems interesting and for the right price I might actually purchase one…

  • john diaz

    Interesting perhaps this will lead to storage that can allow you to install and use apps from the flashcard. (who knows)

    • CPA01

      Unlikely. iOS doesn’t have a user accessible file system. Without that, it’s hard for apps to either be dictated to install on the flash card or for an app to move the files to the flash card. I guess if you jailbreak maybe, but otherwise, no.

  • Guest


  • Annie Leonhardt

    I’ll pay $6.99 and not a penny more. 😀 16gb for $60 xD

  • CPA01

    Meenova does this better and for way less money. $10 for its 2nd generation reader.

    Kingston Digital 64GB Data Traveler on Amazon is $27.99

  • h4nd0fg0d