IT Pro Verdict
An expensive for a 1TB external hard disk, and slow thanks to its outdated and outpaced USB 2.0 connection, the Solo still proves tempting due to its extreme list of security features and ioSafe's extensive after sales coverage and protection. If you're in the market for an extremely secure external hard disk, few are better.
The ioSafe Solo is an external hard drive the size of a shoebox and one which claims to be fire proof and waterproof so its going to stand out from the regular array of storage device.
Weighing in at just under 7kg, the Solo is the heavyweight of external drives, but it's also the safest external disk we've seen.
The build quality is beyond reproach, but then with the claims being made this would be a given. We can't fault the rock-solid exterior, which offers no sign of give or weakness around its panels. The chassis has a more practical security feature at the rear, too - an anti-theft tab that can be used to secure the Solo to any surface.
There are numerous security and data protection features built into the chassis. The Solo is fireproof, so the drive will automatically release water vapour throughout if the temperature exceeds 160 degrees Fahrenheit in order to keep the 1TB disk chilled. It's a system designed to keep data safe for half an hour at temperatures up to a mighty 1,550 degrees Fahrenheit, iOSafe claims.
Conversely, if things get too hot, the Solo's intelligent ventilation will also direct hot air away from the drive to prevent things from getting too toasty.
If waterproofing is critical to your needs, this is the storage device to have
The Solo is waterproof, too. The 1TB drive includes technology to protect data from fresh and salt water. Even if the drive is fully immersed - and it'll be able to function even after being submerged in ten feet of water for up to 72 hours.
Forensic data recovery
As well as numerous physical safeguards, ioSafe also includes a comprehensive after-sales package.
The firm's Data Recovery Service is included for one year after purchasing a Solo. This covers the drive for any loss of data or hardware damage, and can be used once. If activated, ioSafe will include up to $1,000 of forensic data recovery to help recover lost data and, should the Solo be damaged beyond repair, ioSafe will supply a replacement drive - already pre-loaded with recovered data.
It's an extensive, global service, and the Solo also includes three years of standard warranty coverage. The firm's Data Recovery Service can be included for three years or five years, but upping the level of coverage doesn't come cheap.
The three year deal adds $50 to the cost. The five year package, which also adds two years to the warranty - will put $100 on your final bill. And don't be worried by the Dollar prices: ioSafe offers these deals to UK customers, it just doesn't do the conversion.
Mike Jennings has worked as a technology journalist for more than a decade and has been fascinated by computers since childhood, when he spent far too long building terrible websites. He loves desktop PCs, components, laptops and anything to do with the latest hardware.
Mike worked as a staff writer at PC Pro magazine in London for seven years, and during that time wrote for a variety of other tech titles, including Custom PC, Micro Mart and Computer Shopper. Since 2013, he’s been a freelance tech writer, and writes regularly for titles like Wired, TechRadar, Stuff, TechSpot, IT Pro, TrustedReviews and TechAdvisor. He still loves tech and covers everything from the latest business hardware and software to high-end gaming gear, and you’ll find him on plenty of sites writing reviews, features and guides on a vast range of topics.