PQI Offers Eye-Fi-style WiFi Cards With microSD Slots for Flexible Capacity

Eye-Fi cards have seen their fair share of competition, but a new product from memory manufacturer PQI could pose a bigger threat than they’re used to. The Air Card, as PQI are calling it, made its debut at Computex 2012 and, for the most part, offers exactly what we’d expect from a WiFi memory card: it creates its own WiFi hotspot when the camera is turned on, at which point photos appear automatically on whatever tablet, phone or PC you happen to have connected. The card can even connect to three sources at once, although this will slow down the transfer rate quite a bit. One specific feature, however, makes the Air Card stand out.

The feature that differentiates it from other WiFi memory cards on the market is the fact that no actual memory is built into the Air Card itself. Instead it has a slot into which you can insert a microSD card of your choice. If you’re someone who fills up cards quickly, that means you won’t have to buy a bunch of very expensive EyeFi cards, just one shell and as many relatively cheap microSD cards as your heart desires.

PQI have yet to set a definitive price, but with the price difference between an 8GB EyeFi card ($50+ on Amazon) and 32GB microSD (~$20 on Amazon) they would really have to go overboard take away price appeal. Manufacturing is set to start next month, at which point we hope PQI will announce a specific release date a price point.

(via The Verge)

  • Kyoshibecker

    When Sandisk makes xtreme 3 (or 4) micro SD cards then, Ill be sold


    I’ve been thinking about getting an Eye-Fi card, especially since my phone can share 3G connectivity by acting as a Wi-Fi hotspot. It would work great in tandem with my camera. Then i realized: it’s a camera phone anyway; why would i need such a complicated setup to share facebook pictures ?

    Seriously though, what are they still good for ? Besides tethered shooting without the cable ?

  • Kevin A

    Neat, but the suggestion that you’d have to buy multiple Eye-fi cards is a bit off. One of the selling features of Eye-Fi is that it dynamically clears out the memory after it ensure that the photos have been delivered to your computer. I’m not even sure why I’d buy an 8gb Eye-fi, the 4GB will never get filled if it clears out the old stuff automatically.  

    @NEF2JPG I had the same thought, and my Eye-fi card was gathering dust, but now I have a toddler. Now I increasingly find myself in situations where I want to be able to take better pictures quickly, and the phone wasn’t cutting it for toddler speeds. I also increasingly find that I’d rather have a cheap point-and-shoot exposed to the stresses of capturing childplay while my fancy phone stays out of harm’s way and receives the pictures automatically via Eye-fi. I won’t be nearly as upset about losing the point-n-shoot into the pool, for example. and I only have to wait about 5 minutes to be able to facebook/tweet something if I need to