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Eye-Fi X2 cards updated with Direct Mode for Android and iOS transfer

Eye-fi is a greedy little company that I frankly have little respect for due to the way they fragment their own products (e.g; using public Wifi is a £25/year subscription). However, their product is quite nice- and now it supports Android and iOS.

For those of you who have never heard of the Eye-Fi card, it’s a series of SD cards with built in Wifi that allows you to transfer photos directly from the card to a computer. All you have to do is turn ont he camera (so the card gets power) while close to a registered Wifi network and it will transfer the photos (and videos). Different cards and pricing point gives you RAW support, online uploads, fake geotagging (don’t even get me started…) and so on- as I said, fragmented.

Anyways, their newest feature is actually free for all X2 generation cards, even the cheapest X2 Connect 4GB that I have. Direct Mode as it’s called allows the card to transfer images to an iOS or Android device directly, even without a Wifi router (the card creates a Wifi access point for the tablet to connect to). You take a picture, it transfers. Sounds good? Yeah, in theory…

I spend quite a bit of time making videos for this site and while I never script anything nor edit anything, I sometimes have to star over, losing perhaps a few minutes of my time in the process. With the above video, I first created an 8 minute video, then a 10 minute video, then finally this video where everything worked. One of the issues with the Direct Mode system is that it can only be set up to transfer to one device at a time. If you set it to transfer to your iPad like I did, it no longer transfers to your PC. You’d think they could give you an option to transfer to the computer when available and the tablet when not, but apparently not. The process of switching what device it transfers to is extremely buggy and requires connecting to your PC to access settings using their software. The first video was ruined simply because after 8 minutes I still wasn’t able to make it switch to my iPad, and it would transfer images to my computer even if the settings said that the computer wasn’t set up to receive images from that card and that the iPad was. A complete re-pairing later and it worked again.

Then in the second video, everything looked like it was working until I tried to transfer images. Nothing happened- not on my iPad, not on my computer. I started ranting to the camera and used some bad words, then suddenly after a minute or two of idling it started transferring for no apparent reason. I’d set it to stop searching for devices after a minute and I’m pretty sure it had been longer by the time it started transferring, but who knows.

Then, as I was resetting for the third video, the app simply crashed while I was testing everything. I cleared all running apps on the iPad and hoped it would work, and it did.

So, in other words, you cannot leave your card reader at home just yet as this thing is way too buggy right now to be reliable. If they can get it working as well as when connected only to a computer then we can talk, but until then, proceed with caution.

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Andreas Ødegård

Andreas Ødegård is more interested in aftermarket (and user created) software and hardware than chasing the latest gadgets. His day job as a teacher keeps him interested in education tech and takes up most of his time.

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3 thoughts on “Eye-Fi X2 cards updated with Direct Mode for Android and iOS transfer

  • Wi-fi on a SD card? They can do that? I had no idea. Too bad it’s buggy as you say.

    Reply
  • Avatar of samIam78

    Hmm just use a card reader till they fix that I guess. Have you used the product long enough to see improvement in the performance ?

    Reply

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