Best wireless drives 2020: external hard drives without the wires

The best wireless drives offer a few advantages that their wired counterparts cannot, and therefore have an important place in certain users’ setup. It’s true that a wired external storage drive is still king, especially in terms of speed and reliability. However, wireless drives rule when it comes to convenience, versatility and a cleaner, cable-free setup.

If you need to store and access your files without having to think about plugging a drive into your laptop or desktop PC, the best wireless drives are the most ideal solutions. Not only that, but they also let you connect other devices that typically cannot connect to an external storage – like smartphones and tablets. Keeping your space clutter-free – who enjoys having to deal with tangled cables? – is simply a bonus.

Find the most ideal one for your needs on this list. We gathered all the best wireless drives 2020 has to offer. We’ve even included our price comparison tool, so you’re getting the best deal, no matter which one you end up buying.

The best wireless drives at a glance

  1. Western Digital My Passport Wireless SSD
  2. Asus Travelair N
  3. LaCie Fuel
  4. Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro
  5. Seagate Wireless 500GB Mobile Storage

Western Digital My Passport Wireless SSD

The Western Digital My Passport Wireless SSD is a sturdy external hard drive for carrying your data around with you. (Image credit: TechRadar)

Western Digital is building a good collection of wireless drives, and the My Passport Wireless SSD is an excellent addition. As the name suggests, it has an SSD (Solid State Drive) which means it's an excellent performer when it comes to data transfer speeds. However, it's worth noting that when using this wirelessly, you're not getting the full benefit of SSD speeds. However, the solid state technology means it's more robust than traditional hard drives, and with a drop resistant rubber case, the My Passport Wireless SSD is a sturdy external hard drive for carrying your data around with you. Its wireless connection is useful, and it includes a memory card slot as well, making this an excellent choice for photographers.

Asus Travelair N

The Asus Travelair N has a water-resistant design which keeps your data protected while you’re out and about. (Image credit: Asus)

Not only does Asus make great laptops, monitors and gaming components, it's also got a fantastic wireless drive with the Asus Travelair N. It offers 1TB of capacity, comes with a built-in 3300 mAh battery that provides up to 8 hours of streaming time, and even has a water-resistant design which keeps your data protected while you're out and about. You can connect up to five devices at once to access the data on the drive, and there's an SD card slot for quickly and easily backing up photos. Its 7,200 rpm drive is faster than many other Wi-Fi drives, which often stick to 5,400 rpm.

LaCie Fuel

LaCie Fuel is the company’s first attempt at a Wi-Fi drive. (Image credit: LaCie)

LaCie is a company that has made some of our favorite external hard drives, and the LaCie Fuel is the company's first attempt at a Wi-Fi drive. LaCie has a reputation for making good-looking devices, and the Fuel is certainly eye-catching, with a square design and modular design that allows you to use it with a variety of ports. It has a decent 10-hour battery life, which is essential if you want to use it wirelessly. It uses an app that allows you to stream content on the drive to compatible devices, such as smartphones.

Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro

For photographers, Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro will stand out. (Image credit: TechRadar)

Even if we had mixed feelings on past versions of the My Passport Wireless, the 2016 “pro” variant of the external HDD restores faith in the Western Digital name. The design, for one, has been overhauled and no longer resembles the My Passport Ultra or My Passport for Mac. Instead, there’s now a more premium feel to the My Passport Wireless Pro. It resembles an external DVD drive, but considering the onboard SD card slot, don’t worry about getting it confused with anything else. For photographers, this will make the Wireless Pro stand out.

For everyone else, there’s a massive 6,400mAh battery built into the device. This lets the drive be used completely free of wires over 2.4GHz or 5GHz channels. When it’s wired up, however, don’t expect cutting edge connection tech, as the My Passport Wireless Pro uses only USB Type-B to Type-A. Completely absent is the latest and greatest USB-C connection.

Where the My Passport Wireless Pro compromises on affordability, it’s able to benefit in just about every other area. Of course, not everyone needs a wireless hard drive or SD card support, but for those who do, it’s almost essential.

Seagate Wireless 500GB Mobile Storage

Seagate Wireless 500GB Mobile Storage is one of the most affordable wireless drives. (Image credit: Seagate)

Seagate is a well known brand when it comes to storage, and it's the parent company of LaCie, which has its own wireless drive in this list, so it's not too surprising to find that Seagate also does its own very good wireless drive, the Seagate Wireless 500GB Mobile Storage. At 500GB, it's not the largest wireless drive on this list, but it's one of the most affordable, so if you want one of the best wireless drives on the market, but you don't need that much storage space (and you certainly don't want to pay for capacity you're not going to use), then this is a great choice. It comes with a 6 hour battery, and is compatible with iOS, Android, Kindle and PC and Macs.

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