Samsung T7 Touch Portable USB SSD w/Fingerprint Reader Review

Samsung T7 Touch Portable USB SSD w/Fingerprint Reader Review

Buy it at Amazon: Samsung T7 Touch Portable USB SSD w/Fingerprint Reader [Affiliate Link]

Takeaway: Easy setup, lightweight and compact, secures your files, fast transfers.

You’ll receive the SSD, 18” USB-C to USB-C cable, 18” USB-A to USB-C cable, and a quick start guide. The drive measures 3.25”W x 2.25”L and 0.25” thick. On the left side is a USB-C port which fits either cable, which are reversible. The brushed aluminum case shows the device name on the back, while the right hand side shows the model number and serial number. On top of the drive is a 0.5” square fingerprint reader and Samsung’s branding. The SSD weighs only 2 oz. Compared to my Galaxy Note 9 mobile phone, this drive is pretty small and has a footprint the size of a credit card.

To setup the password and fingerprint security for this drive, plug it into a USB-A or USB-C port of a computer using one of the cables. The LED around the fingerprint scanner will turn on. On your computer, navigate to the drive in a file explorer. It’ll be called T7 Touch. Launch the installation file for your Windows or Apple OS and follow the instructions on the screen to install the software. It’ll ask you whether or not you’re in the EU.

Once in the software, you can rename your drive and activate security with password only or password and fingerprint. Select a password you’ll remember. If you forget it, there is no way to recover the data on the drive. The second part will ask you to scan your fingerprint. For this step, you’ll have to scan the same finger multiple times. Lift and rescan your finger in different positions so it can get a full scan; you’ll see the progress bar in the software increment as it recognizes more of your fingerprint. After you’re done, you can save another fingerprint, up to 4 total, in case you want a backup or want to add a trusted second person to give access to it; the process is the same. When you’re done you can start using the drive. If you don’t want to secure the drive and have to enter a password or scan your finger each time you plug it in, you can turn security mode off, but if you do so, your password and fingerprints will be deleted, so you’d have to do this process again. You can manage your fingerprints too which lets you delete or rename them if multiple people have access or you use different fingers etc.

When connected via the USB-C to USB-C cable, the read and write speed are around 400-425 MB/s for sequential data and around 100-120 MB/s for random 512K read and write. When I switched the cable over to the USB-A to USB-C, the results were very similar, which isn’t surprising given that both types of ports on my laptop are USB generation 3.1. What this means in practical terms is that when moving large files to and from the drive, around 1 GB in size, this operation only takes a couple seconds.

When you unplug and subsequently plug-in in the drive, if you try to access it without entering a password or scanning a fingerprint, you’ll see only the installation files and a text document that says “This is a read only partition.” All other folders and file will not be visible. If you try to add new files to the drive it’ll say there isn’t enough space or that the drive is write-protected. After logging in or scanning your fingerprint, then you can access the other files on the drive.

The other cool thing you can do with this drive is plug it directly into a smartphone with a USB-C port. First you’ll have to download and install the Samsung Portable SSD app on your Android phone. Then connect the SSD to your phone’s charging port and scan your fingerprint. For me, there was a bug where the app never recognized that the SSD was connected, although after scanning my fingerprint I was able to access the drive’s contents, copy files to it, and view the secured files on it. If I didn't scan my fingerprint the drive remained locked. However, this bug prevented me from using the password to unlock the SSD, so hopefully this bug is fixed in the next app update.

Other than that, I thought the drive worked great. It’s small and compact, has fast read and write times, and adds security to the data on the drive in the event that it gets lost or stolen. I can use it to backup sensitive personal data, for important work documents, or even just to offload photos and video from my phone while on vacation to free up more space on my phone.

Buy it at Amazon: Samsung T7 Touch Portable USB SSD w/Fingerprint Reader [Affiliate Link]

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