Although there are numerous backup solutions in the market (such as RAID solutions or online, internet-based services), every day a lot of people face data loss, along with great disappointment due to their inability to recover precious memories, stored in the form of files and folders. The reason, usually, is the inconvenience and complexity involved with the process of backing-up personal data, leading users to ignore warnings and avoid regular backup. Now, Seagate is aiming to lower the threshold for implementing a backup solution, using the Replica, a portable storage device, along with Rebit, software that simplifies the backup process.
The Replica is offered in two models; one has a capacity of 250GB and the second has a capacity of 500GB. Its body has an average size comparable to similar backup solutions, with dimensions of 142.60mm x 101.28mm x 18.20mm and weight a of 260 grams. The dock – which is used only with the larger model – has dimensions of 141.04mmx28.40mm x 50.22mm, and it weighs 160 grams. The dock allows users to connect multiple PCs simultaneously, giving several users access to the stored files.
According to specifications the Replica supports USB 2.0 (but not the upcoming standard of USB 3.0) and its rotational speed is 5400 RPM – like most hard drives available today. Seagate’s choice not to implement the latest, high-end standards –USB 3.0 compatibility and 7200 RPM speed – might hinder some potential buyers that look for the best backup solutions. Moreover, currently Windows 7 is not officially supported (though some users report it works flawlessly). Macintosh users are also excluded.
One evident benefit the Replica offers is style: it is slim and elegant, and its design fits most desktops. While design and portability are not the most important properties (since not all users carry their backup drive around) such features could make the Replica desirable for some potential consumers.
The smaller, 250GB model is priced at $130, and the larger, 250GB model has a price tag of $180 (dock included). Bottom line, the factor that will affect the Replica’s success is its ability to live up to expectations: simplifying the backup process beyond existing measures.
TFOT has also covered SafeMouse, a mouse with 4GB of internal storage that can backup user files, and Back in a Flash, a backup solution in the form of a USB stick that automatically backs user files every day. Other related TFOT stories include one on the LaCie 500GB HD, an external hard drive designed by Neil Poulton, and another on the Voyager, the first quad SATA docking station, allowing quicker backup operation with traditional SATA hard-drives.
For more information about Segate’s Replica, see its datasheet (PDF).