Polaroid's Upcoming ClickFree Photo Backup Drive

This slipped by me earlier in the month, but it’s a pretty cool little drive of special interest to shutterbugs. It’s an upcoming storage device developed in a partnership between Polaroid and Storage Appliance Corporation. Called the Polaroid Media Backup Photo Edition, it’s essentially a portable 40GB hard drive designed for backing up your photos—and only your photos. I haven’t tested it out yet, but if the $129 drive works as promised, it’s definitely some of the best tech for the clueless that I’ve seen.

Storage Appliance has a ClickFree technology built into the drive that, as soon as it’s connected by USB to your Windows 2000 or XP computer (Vista support will be ready at launch in Q1 2007), hunts down any image file (more than 60 different file types are supported) and automatically backs them up. No software to install, no setup process to go through. Nothing. It just finds them and saves them to the drive. Even if they’re in compressed folders.

The device doesn’t even have a power button. The only thing you’ll find is a mini USB port on the top edge and next to it, an input for the included power adapter. And if your computer supplies enough power, you don’t have to use the adapter for power; the USB cable carries enough juice to run the drive.

Like any good backup device, it doesn’t do a complete overwrite everytime you connect it. It uses unidirectional incremental backups, only saving new files and those that have been modified on your computer. And if you want, the drive’s restore feature can be used to share your files on another PC, again without installing any software.