Dell unveils the ultra-compact Portable Thunderbolt 3 SSDs

The amount of data we can store and the ability to take it with us has improved in leaps and bounds over the years. We're often still left waiting when it comes time to copy it, especially in the case of portable storage devices. Samsung's T5 drives offer one solution to that problem, but Dell is looking to break the sound barrier with its new offerings, announced this week at CES: the Dell Portable Thunderbolt 3 SSDs.

Picture definitely not to scale

The drives come in 500 GB and 1 TB capacities. Dell says these are the world's most compact Thunderbolt 3 storage devices. They measure in at a diminuitive 3.9" long, 1.9" wide, and just 0.8" thick (9.9 cm x 4.8 cm x 2 cm). And these things are fast. Dell boasts that the drives can hit a 2650 MB/s sequential transfer speed over the drive's Thunderbolt 3 connection (for read operations, presumably). Compare that to 540 MB/s shipped over that Samsung T5's USB 3.1 connection and you start to see a wide gap forming.

If you're going to pick one of these up, it's probably on a need-to-have basis. The 500 GB (SDI1T0500) will go for $439, while the 1TB model (SD1-T1000) almost doubles the price at $799. Dell says both versions will be available on February 28, 2018. The drives are covered by a 3-year warranty.

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