Snapping pictures is easy and fun, but the smartphone camera is seldom adequate for truly great shots. If you want the features of a digital camera, you compromise file mobility/connectivity for quality pictures.
Eye-Fi has a problem with this compromise and is dedicated to moving those professional shots between devices and the web in convenient ways. Its latest method uses a device called a Mobi, which can slide into the SDHC port on your camera and create its own WiFi signal that can be picked up by a smartphone or tablet. Using this wireless signal, users can move pictures taken with a digital camera to other devices.
Before you question the future of SD cards, you should consider that the microSD card's size will make photographers cringe at the thought of lost files. This, combined with decreasing prices, more or less assures a solid future for SD cards as storage devices for digital cameras. Eye-Fi is not planning to release a microSD-sized Mobi, though a 32Gb version is in the works.
Let's talk about what the Mobi does. This class 10 SD card is special in that it can create its own limited access network and immerse your camera into the Internet of Things (IoT), allowing it to communicate with app-compatible, WiFi-enabled devices, mainly iOS 5.1 and Android 2.3 phones and tablets, as well as the Kindle Fire.
The 8Gb and 16Gb Mobi cards have a WiFi range of 45 feet indoors and 90 feet outdoors. You link the card to your mobile device by entering a unique 10-digit code (included with your Mobi) into the app. The device does not take an internal battery; it uses your camera's battery to enable the WiFi during transfers, and it shuts off automatically when updates are complete. Updates can be set to happen automatically, or you can switch the WiFi signal on manually. File movements appear to be possible only from Mobi to handheld, not vice versa.
Videos can also be sent from your camera to handheld devices through the Mobi. It can transfer up to 2GB of video supporting .mpg, .mov, .flv, .wmv, .avi, .mp4, .mts, .m4v, and .3gp file types, along with .jpeg picture files.
The device works with many brands, including Canon and Fujitsu, but not all types of cameras are supported. Luckily, a dropdown menu on the Eye-Fi website lets you search for your brand and model to see if it is compatible. If you're looking for a new digital camera, there are some Eye-Fi Connected cameras that provide improved experience using the Mobi.
The smaller Mobi is available for $50, and the larger one is available for $80. Never sacrifice quality for mobility. This is going to work well for my trips to expos.