Inspecting gadgets

ACN rounds up the latest and greatest executive gadgets, from a battle-ready brick to a chocolate-themed mobile and a glass-friendly mouse.

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Inspecting gadgets SanDisk’s Cruzer Enterprise.
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By  Imthishan Giado Published  October 18, 2009 Arabian Computer News Logo
Made for military

SanDisk’s Cruzer Enterprise USB flash memory hard drives have been lurking around for a while, but now they are sporting a new batch of military-grade features. The armed forces are known for their love of discipline and regimen, and it’s no surprise that this also applies to the little sticks of flash memory that leap into vacant USB slots.

The good news for the enterprise world is that the military has such sky-high standards requirements, that usually the adage of ‘good enough for the military’ means a secure and standardised product is on offer. In the case of the Cruzer Enterprise, it meets the United States’ 810-F environmental standards, and you’re forgiven if that doesn’t immediately make any sense.

The standard requires that IT devices meet certain criteria to prevent the loss of critical information if the host drive is ever exposed to liquid. So if you’re considering jumping into the swimming pool with your keynote speech in your pocket, the beefed up Cruzer Enterprise could be just the ticket.

We were surprised to learn that this is the selling point of the updated drives, as it’s quite easy to spill the morning cup of caffeine with a wayward elbow and it would be nice to think that USB keys would be able to withstand a few drops on their own. In the case of the SanDisk Cruzer Enterprise, you probably can’t strap it to your oxygen tanks on a scuba dive down into the depths of the Arabian Gulf, but it will withstand a splash from your beverage of choice.

One of the nicer features included in the new Enterprise is section 508 compliance. While that might sound like something from The X-Files, what it really means is it adheres to US standards for technology to be accessible to the visually impaired. This result has come about thanks to a few tweaks to the graphical user interface and is going above and beyond for a USB manufacturer, particularly as most drive creators are more interested in the novelty element – such as USB drives in the shape of a space shuttle.

While it may be fun to have a cute little model of NASA’s years of hard work plugged into your machine, chances are it won’t come with FIPS 140-2 certification for encryption, which should be the bare minimum for a drive that has the word ‘enterprise’ stamped in its name. Bottom line is the new Cruzer Enterprise is a tough little USB stick with a slick black shell that is easy to like in a Matrix-esque way, but this is an upgrade on an already established removable device, not a groundbreaking new development.

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