The Leyio is a portable 16GB secure storage and file-sharing device that lets you transfer data wirelessly to other Leyio owners.
It transfers data up to a maximum transfer rate of 10MB/s, with the range extending up to 10m but you have to be nearer than that to establish communication. That you do by pointing two Leyios at each other and holding down a button on both simultaneously. As well as wireless transfers, the Leyio features a detachable 2GB USB drive and a USB interface for connection to a PC.
We were initially sceptical about this bright, funky looking device. It’s not exactly overburdened with extra features. You can preview pictures but you can’t view video files on the tiny screen and it can’t play music. It’s all about storage and data transfer, but what really surprised us was how easy and fun it was to use.
Once you’ve paired two Leyios, all you need to do is highlight the file or folder you want to copy and flick your wrist. The device feels great to hold and vibrates when it sends or receives a file. Transfer speeds are quick and sending files is effortless, if slightly too easy to do by accident if you gesticulate when you talk.
Data stored on the Leyio is protected by a fingerprint scanner and five-digit pin code. The fingerprint scanner, like most, is a bit hit and miss but the backup pin code entry is simple.
As soon as you first turn the device on, you have to swipe your fingerprint. This is then stored and only you can access the device. If you get it wrong five times, you’ll have to enter the pin code. This seems a little overkill as the Leyio is presumably designed as a bit of fun rather than a serious business tool.
Even the removable USB stick is wiped as soon as it’s re-inserted into the Leyio, so there’s little chance of accidentally leaving a confidential file lying around.
The fingerprint scanner doubles as a scroll wheel and select key. A second button lets you to connect to other Leyios, cancel operations and move out of folders. You can manage data on your Leyio by connecting it to a computer, where it’ll show up as a storage device. You can also add links for your social networking profiles via a management tool on the website.
If everyone had a Leyio, you could just flick your phone number to the new friend you’d made, flick your electronic business card to a contact or your holiday snaps to your mum. It’d be really useful. Unfortunately, everyone doesn’t have one and they cost £159 to buy.
Despite its handy features and cool design, we can’t really see the Leyio catching on. How many people actually need to transfer data between themselves when out and about? We’ve heard some rumours about Leyios being given away in the future with contract mobiles, which could help, but we’re really not sure how big the Leyio’s potential market is at this price. If you still want one, you can find out more at www.leyio.com.
Adapted from a preview by Kat Orphanides at Computer Shopper
Typical price: £159
Fun to use
Fast file transfers
Unreliable fingerprint recognition
Verdict: If Leyio was given as standard issue to every human, it would be a great way to transfer files. Unfortunately this is unlikely to happen any time soon.
More info: Leyio Website