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Pogoplug media sharing drive

Data and media sharing aren't the most engaging of terms, but there's no getting away from the fact we've all got lots of digital files and photos and it's tricky to keep tabs on it all.

What's needed is a bigger hard drive – preferably one that allows us to get at all the photos and video clips we've created, the reports we've slaved over and the designs we've crafted.

The Pogoplug is just such an item – and a pretty unusual one at that. First, there's the eye-catching colour and design. Most such drives trade on being small and unobtrusive; this one positively screams "I'M HERE!!!"

It doesn't just plug in to a PC or laptop and suck your files across for archiving. Instead, it provides a connection to the internet from the drive containing that archive, thereby enabling you to access the contents of the external drive from any web-connected device that has the right access privileges and credentials.

This doesn't just include boring old laptops and PCs you might use to remotely access that work report you forgot to bring in to the office. The Pogoplug also works as a media streaming device and comes with its own iPhone app so you can show off clips you've recorded on it or the photos you've taken. You can also stream video from a Sony PlayStation 3 or from an Xbox 360.

Another useful aspect of the media sharing concept is that you don't have to bother about Facebook privacy issues or whether you've 'friended' someone you'd rather didn't see the pics of your latest trip. You can simply issue access to the folder of photos on the Pogoplug instead.

The Pogopug comes with a network cable to connect to a router and thence to the home network. It needs to be powered from the mains and works with any USB storage device – so you can just plug in a USB memory stick and stream music or photos from that. A one-time login at the Pogoplug website is needed to set up the user account and password.

The Pogoplug costs £99.99 and is available from John Lewis, Amazon UK and Firebox.

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