Neowin at Digital Life: U3 BeSmart Drives

Oddly enough, one of the more interesting devices at the convention was a flash drive. U3, the company that developed the technology behind the new "smart" drives that are sold by various flash drive manufacturers, had a very interesting presentation. By "interesting", I mean the gentleman presenting spent half of his time throwing dollar bills into the crowd. He got our attention, for sure.

After the entertainer was done speaking, another gentleman came up and started to show off the new U3 BeSmart Flash drive technology. Let me tell you, this is one heck of a flash drive. First and foremost, the drive is automatically password protected. If you lose the device and someone tries to log in with the wrong password, it will prohibit them from accessing your information. Not only that, but if 100 failed log in attempts are recorded, the drive automatically formats itself and destroys all the contained data.

While security is nice, the "portable desktop" concept was even more appealing. At one point, the presenter put in his own BeSmart drive and, after logging in, almost instantly, the Windows wallpaper was changed to that of his own, and Yahoo! Widgets and Skype opened up. Along with all of that, a version of McAfee Antivirus opened and was actively protecting the drive. From that point on, portable versions of Firefox and Thunderbird (from were opened up alongside a sudoku game.

As soon as I saw this, I realized how this one drive could easily be one of the most useful tools for anyone who spends time repairing the PC's of every last person they know. Nothing was installed on the hard drive and all the applications closed immediately upon removal of the flash drive, supposedly leaving no trace/evidence of the applications ever even being run. Pretty useful for that small time repairman or the guy who wants to sneak some games into his office.

It's hard to admit, but, yes, I was amazed by a flash drive (and the flying money). Apparently, I'm not the only one. Almost every major flash drive manufacturer is on board and will have/already has their own BeSmart drives. If you're in the market for a flash drive, definitely make sure to check out these little critters.

Images: Login Screen | Applications Auto Run

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