I rarely write about things from Kickstarter and the like, but this accessory really caught my attention.
Meem is a USB lead that not only charges your device, but also backs up data to internal storage at the same time.
In effect, it’s like turning any USB power source into a computer to let you store your valuable data. It also means backups are made regularly, and automatically, which is always an issue with regular backup strategies.
Trying to remember to do a backup on a regular basis is always going to end in tears. Now there’s no need to remember at all.
Peace of mind
I’d never suggest using this as the only backup strategy for your phone or tablet. Indeed, most smartphone users can now enjoy free online backup services that will backup your photos and videos.
App data can also be saved automatically these days, and other documents can easily be saved to Google Drive, iCloud, OneDrive etc.
To me, Meem is an additional safety net. It also means you can get access to your saved data quicker than you might get it from the cloud – especially if you’re away from a fast, reliable, Internet connection. Or a cloud service goes down.
And let’s face it, you can never have too many backups, right?
Meem still needs to hit its target before it goes into full-scale production, but at the time of writing, it has got almost half way.
A demonstration of the kit to the BBC also gives additional confidence that the product isn’t vapourware. Of course, like any Kickstarter investment there are no guarantees, so buyer beware and all that.
Think of it as a fairly safe gamble and you should be okay.
For iOS and Android
The device will be available for iOS and Android users. For iOS users, you will get a lightning cable, and Android users will get a micro USB connector. Apps for each platform will automatically start the backup process each time the cable is connected.
Storage options include 16GB and 32GB, with prices starting from £49.99, but Meem is keen to stress that only your personal data is backed up, not system files and other files that do not need to be saved.
All backups are incremental, so following an initial backup process that could take a while (but still less time than doing a full charge), subsequent backups should be fairly quick.
As yet there’s no word on a USB-C variant for newer devices like those from OnePlus and Google, and almost all new devices coming out in 2016, but hopefully this will come later in the year. Meanwhile, you should be able to use a micro USB to USB-C adapter.
The cable itself can charge at a maximum rate of 2.8A at 5V, which is an added benefit over connecting to a PC direct and being limited to around 0.5A.
More info: Kickstarter.com