By Alexandra Burlacu | Apr 07, 2013 11:35 AM EDT
One drawback with many hot devices is their lack of expandable memory, but one Kickstarter campaign aims to change that.
The campaign in question seeks funding for a "mini MicroSD reader for Android smartphones and tablets" for devices that lack microSD support, such as the Nexus 7. The gadget would also work with devices that support "USB host or USB-OTG (On-The-Go)."
Brothers Andy and Rich are not too fond of the Nexus 7's lack of MicroSD expansion, so they developed the aforementioned prototype and now seek funding on Kickstarter to raise $5,000 and start production for the gadget. It seems they are not the only ones suffering from the lack of storage expansion, as 507 backers already pledged $5,829 at the time of writing, exceeding the project's initial goal with 27 days left to go.
"Hello world! You like your Nexus tablet but you hate the fact that it doesn't have a built-in SD card reader for storage expansion? My brother and I felt that way when we first got one in July 2012. So we decided to do something about it - make one for it," explains the project description on Kickstarter. "After many months of hard work, finally we have something that we feel good about and we want to share it with the world."
The mini MicroSD reader/writer is roughly the size of a quarter, and aims to let users "read/write MicroSD cards, copy files between your phone/tablet and a MicroSD card." The gadget will support MicroSDHC cards of up to 32GB, as well as MicroSDXC cards of up to 64GB. Although inspired by the Nexus 7's shortcoming, the device is designed to work with a variety of other Android smartphones and tablets in the same situation, not just Google's tablet.
The developers tested the microSD reader/writer with several devices, and the Kickstarter page for the product lists the following compatible gadgets:
According to the project description, Class 1 support means the phone/tablet can support it out of the box, without requiring any rooting or other "privileged software." Class 2 support would involve using third-party software such as Media Importer, which Class 3 support requires a custom ROM such as CyanogenMod.
"It should work with most other devices that support USB host or USB-OTG (On-The-Go) as long as the device maker doesn't intentionally disable such functionality," adds the description. "For the technically inclined, it has been tested and verified on all four major mobile SoCs(system-on-a-chip): Qualcomm Snapdragon, Samsung Exynos 3, 4 & 5, Nvidia Tegra 2 & 3, TI OMAP; as well as on RockChip and AllWinner chips. It is expected to work on future version of those SoCs -- but this is not guaranteed, see Risk section."
Estimated delivery date for the gadget is July 2013. The minimum pledge for the project is $1, which will get backers a "heart-felt Thank You," except for three lucky participants who will also get a mini MicroSD reader. Pledging $8 or more will get backers a card reader ready to ship anywhere in the world, but all spots for this tier are already taken. Thos who pledge $12 or more will benefit from the same offer, i.e. the card reader shipped anywhere in the world. Lastly, backers who pledge $2048 or more will get the card reader, a hand-made prototype, as well as the chance to learn more over lunch with Andy in Mountain view and a guided tour with Rich, visiting the Shenzhen factory that will build the gadget, Travel and lodging expenses are not included with these offers.
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