Feeds
75%

Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive

As capacious as an elephant's scrotum - and as visually appealing?

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

Review You can go too far to be consumer friendly. Making a device straightforward to set up and get running with some clear, simple guidance is all very well, but it's easy to overdo it and come across chirpy and brainless. Seagate has come perilously close with its FreeAgent Pro external hard drive.

Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive

Seagate clearly believes ordinary folk are scared of storage, even though external drives have never been easier to connect and use. So, opening the FreeAgent Pro's box reveals not only the most basic of set-up guides - reassuringly headlined, in large, friendly letters, "This won't take long" - but all the cables and adaptors come in little grey bags each sealed with a yellow sticker marked "Hello".

Every page of the set-up instructions includes the time Seagate expects you to take with each stage, claiming you'll be done in 1 minute 51 seconds. Or not - as it says on the back: "Times may vary depending on exactly how excited you are about using your new FreeAgent Pro data mover."

Heck, even Mac packaging isn't this smug.

And let me repeat those last few words. "Data mover." Even the phrase 'hard drive' might prove unfathomable for poor old Colin, the Confused Consumer.

But the worse is yet to come: the FreeAgent's design. Again, in a bid to stress that storage products are as relevant to consumers as they are to office drones, Seagate has come up with a look that's miles from the grey blocks of yore. The drive's encased in black plastic moulded to look like brushed metal and banded with translucent orange plastic that lights up when you connect the power supply. It's also eminently scratchable as I found after taking it home one evening.

Black and orange can go together, but here the illumination resembles nothing so much as the sickly glow you get from sodium street lamps.

The Power of One Infographic

More from The Register

next story
Say goodbye to the noughties: Yesterday’s hi-fi biz is BUSTED, bro
Are the days of floorstanders and separates numbered?
LG unfurls flexible SEE-THROUGH 18-inch display
Roll up, roll up for 60-inch telly scrolls by 2017
The final score: Gramophones 1 – Glassholes 0
My life according to a Google Arse
It's finally happened: Bloke builds BOFH-style goofing-off cattle prod
BZZZT: Slapper man seeks funds for jolt-a-slacker device
'Ribbed' for your pleasure: Jony Ive unveils NAKED IPHONE
All-glass mobe could herald the END of traditional cases
iWatch watch: Apple tags sales bod from luxury Swiss watch firm
TAG Heuer retail man pinched for wearables division
IBM's $3bn bet on next-gen computers: Carbon nanotubes, neuro chips
Big Blue exec tells El Reg what to keep an eye on
Military-grade bruiser: Getac F110 rugged tablet... is no iPad
Intel Core i5, 11.6 inches, tough as old boots Windows slab
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
The Power of One Brief: Top reasons to choose HP BladeSystem
Download this brochure to find five ways HP BladeSystem can optimize your business with the power of one.
Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable
Learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.