Hands On: Samsung T3 portable SSD drive

By James Fordham, May 23 2016
Hands On: Samsung T3 portable SSD drive

With massive storage space, fast speeds, and a sleek new design, Samsung's T3 portable SSD drives have what it takes when it comes to heavy-duty business tasks.

These pocket-sized units are a follow-on from the Korean manufacturer’s previous T1 range (yes, for some reason Samsung skipped the 'T2' generation).

Advances in solid state technology now see the drives top out at 2TB – twice the 1TB ceiling of the T1 – although you can also stump for 1TB, 500GB and 250GB versions.

The T3 range has also been redesigned with a more durable shock-proof metal case: a big step up from the T1, which was wrapped in flimsy-feeling plastic enclosure) and a USB Type C connector in place of a micro USB jack.

While the storage space is more plentiful, the speed is not much of an improvement on the T1 range. Samsung claims the T3 will transfer data at a speed of 450MB/s, which is similar to what the T1 offered.

While there are slightly larger competitors like the SanDisk Extreme 900 capable of transferring data at around 850MB/s, the Samsung T3 range packs plenty of punch for the average user, unless you happen to be handling large amounts of 4k video or other large files.

In terms of portability, the Samsung T3 range is a winner – it weighs in at just 51 grams, and its extremely slim form factor and tiny footprint means that it’s easy to use on the go.

The shock-proof metal casing ensures that your data is protected from nasty accidents, and Samsung includes a handy USB Type C to Type A cable so that connectivity isn’t hampered.

In actual use, the Samsung T3 1TB model works equally as well on Windows machines as it does on Macs: there’s no need to reformat the drive when switching between the two.

It also connects to TVs and Android phones and tablets, making it the perfect partner for presentations and demonstrations on the road, with an Android app available which allows you to update the T3’s password settings and check how much space is available.

The 250GB Samsung T3 retails at $199, with the 500GB model at $329, 1TB for $649 and 2TB at $1,249.

Those sticker prices reflect the capacity, speed and portability of the T3 range.

The T3 range is one of the most impressive options on the market for portable SSDs, and is perfectly suited for those making the switch from a full-size laptop to a tablet/laptop hybrid or just looking for more storage space in the smallest possible device.

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James has been interested in aviation ever since his first flight. When he’s not travelling, he’s still on the road indulging his motoring hobby, or trying a new whisky.

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13 Jul 2015

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While it's usually what's on the inside which counts for these, I feel like the T1 itself was more premium 'looking' over the T3, but like you said, maybe it didn't feel as good (aka durability). 

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