When it comes to using the Raspberry Pi, one of the key issues is storage. Micro SD cards are limited in size and become more expensive for the larger capacity cards, and while Western Digital have offered a 1TB PiDrive for some time now, its price tag of almost $80 puts it way above the cost of the Pi itself. Now, in order to accompany the Pi 3, Western Digital have announced a smaller 314GB version of PiDrive that will cost just $31.
The new Raspberry Pi 3 may have the power to be a replacement for a fully-fledged PC, but the form factor of the board limits its hardware options. With no on-board storage, the Pi typically relies on a micro SD card slot in order to hold its operating system and other user files or an external hard drive. Unfortunately, not just any external hard drive is supported by the Pi, but Western Digital have been releasing drives specifically designed to be Pi-supported. These drives have been fine-tuned in order to drastically reduce their power draw compared to other mechanical drives and offer a small form-factor. The new PiDrive supports up to a USB 3.0 interface, which can be connected to one of the Raspberry Pi’s USB 2.0 ports. Western Digital even offer a “BerryBoot” installer that can load software and operating systems onto the Pi’s drive at boot-time.
With the Raspberry Pi becoming more and more advanced, it is good to see companies developing peripherals designed to allow the miniature PCs achieve their full potential, especially when it is provided at a price and form-factor to match the Pi itself.