NextStar Wi-Fi, a Wireless Hard Drive Dock from Vantec

PCs can connect easily enough, but Apple and Google devices can do so as well

As far as hard drive docks go, they are usually very straightforward devices with barely an odd feature on them, but that doesn't mean they can't be unusual. Vantec is proving that quite readily really.

Vantec is a worldwide supplier of computer accessories, mobile products and storage devices, which means it has a Hard Drive Dock lineup, for sale, among other things.

The latest addition to this product series is called the NextStar Wi-Fi and, obviously, supports Wi-Fi wireless connections.

Normally, an HDD dock uses either a USB port or LAN (local area network) to provide extra storage to a PC, or network-connected systems.

By using Wi-Fi, Vantec's new NexStar provides this benefit not just to PCs, but to phones, tablets and portable music players as well (UPnP capable).

That includes Apple gadgets and equivalent devices running any variation of Google's Android operating system.

The only condition for connections to be established is that the NextStar Wi-Fi app needs to be installed. Obviously, Apple's App Store and Google Play offer them.

NextStar Wi-Fi Hard Drive Dock will start shipping this December (2012), but the price hasn't been revealed yet.

When considering its viability, prospective buyers should probably consider that Wi-Fi isn't the only means of communication available. Like any self-respective storage hub, the newcomer has a USB 3.0 external interface as well (one port).

Other notable traits include Airplay support (data can be streamed to any Apple devices that handle Airplay), simultaneous sharing (Wi-Fi connections can be maintained with multiple items at once, even though a single 2.5/3.5-inch HDD can be installed at any one time) and WEP/WPA/WPA2 security.

More information can be found on the official product page but, as we’ve said above, the price is not known yet, so we'll all just have to wait until an online store or two list the Vantec NextStar Wi-Fi.

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