Lacie launches sleek storage with USB 3.0

Lacie has entered the golden Age of USB 3.0 with its release of two new external hard-drives named - you guessed it - the Rikiki and the Minimus.

The sleek, trendy, Apple-like gadgetry will provide you with either 1TB (3.5-inch) or 500GB (2.5-inch) storage in a brushed 'resistant aluminum' case worthy of the Lacie brand (because wobbly aluminum won't do?).

The Rikiki and Minimus drives are updates to Lacie's existing offer of USB 2.0, adding USB 3.0 performance to the mix. Rikiki, which sounds like some long lost species of monkey, is the smaller of the duo, in 2.5-inch format and weighs just 176g with a tiny 75x118.5x13.4mm footprint.

Minimus, which ironically is the biggest of the two drives, is a 3.5-inch 1.87lbs drive which hooks up to your PC via USB 3.0 or 2.0, but requires an external power supply to operate. With either kit, punters also get a bonus 10GB of Wuala storage for parting with their money.

Lacie, which has over time reduced its price tag substantially, is now selling these direct at $129.99 for the 3.5-incher and $99.99 for the 2.5-incher, a bit upmarket if you ask us, but that is the way the USB 3.0 cookie crumbles. The kit should be reaching British shores no later than October.

You just know all this fuss about USB 3.0 and Intel is going to be 'much ado about nothing', because when world+dog are coming out with more and more USB 3.0 drives, it just seems silly and non-sensical not to throw your weight behind the standard.

Remember that Lacie - being traditionally big on Apple platforms - won't be able to squeeze USB 3.0 levels of performance out of Mac OS X, at least not until Apple comes out with Sandy Bridge-powered Macs.

It's funny that Lacie doesn't sell a separate USB 3.0 add-in card for Macs... no wait... they do. But Mac OS X is die-hard FireWire 800, right?