The sales continue for Cyber Monday, with bargains to be had on just about every product on the market right now. That includes storage of all shapes and sizes, but with so many retailers and so many options to choose from, how do you know you’re getting the best deal possible?
That’s where we at Tech Advisor come in; using our expertise, we’ve scoured the web and found the best Cyber Monday storage deals so you don’t have to. We’ve also provided a bit of buying advice for those buying a storage device for a friend or family member but aren’t sure what to look for.
Best storage deals right now
SanDisk High Performance Class 10 microSD Card (64GB)
From: Currys PC World
Now: £19.99 (£5 off)
SanDisk Ultra 128GB microSDXC Memory Card + SD Adapter
Now: £16.79 (£16.46 off)
What to look for when buying storage
When it comes to buying a decent storage device, there are various elements that you should consider. The most important aspect of any storage device is transfer speeds; read speeds are important if you want to play videos via a USB drive, for example, while write speeds should be prioritised if you’re frequently transferring or saving large files.
For USB-connected storage devices, the USB format is just as important as transfer speeds. USB 3.0 is the de facto standard across the industry right now, so we’d recommend that as a minimum. The older USB 2.0 standard still works fine, but you’ll be taking a hit in the transfer speed department, so we’d avoid if possible.
USB 3.1 offers double the transfer speeds of USB 3.0, but needs a USB 3.1 port to take full advantage of the theoretical top speeds – and that’s something not available on many devices right now. USB-C drives are great if you want to share files across different types of devices, like transferring photos from a PC to a USB-C enabled smartphone. Just be sure you’ve got a USB-C port on your device!
Other aspects are device-specific, so we’ve broken them down into four categories below.
When it comes to USB drives specifically, storage capacity is the main element to consider. You can pick up a great quality 16/32GB USB drive for around £10/$10 right now, so it’s not worth buying anything smaller than that.
16/32GB of storage should be enough for most purposes, but you might want to go for a 64GB, 128GB or even 256GB USB drive if you’re transferring 4K video, creating OS boot drives or anything else that requires the storage of particularly large files.
For more information, take a look at our selection of the best USB drives.
Portable HDDs and SSDs
Generally speaking, portable hard drives (HDDs) are cheaper than solid state drives (SSDs) and offer more bang for your buck in terms of storage, but they’re not perfect. HDDs are more prone to damage when knocked or dropped, especially when in-use, while SSDs can take more of a beating. SSDs can also read and write at higher speeds than HDDs, especially when connected via USB 3.1 or USB-C.
Security is another important aspect when on the market for a portable HDD or SSD. It’s important to protect your data, especially when it includes sensitive data and could be misplaced. Some portable drives offer built-in hardware encryption, which is the easiest route to take, but you’ve got the option of using PC software to encrypt either parts or all of the drive if required.
We’ve got plenty more buying advice in our roundup of the best portable HDDs and SSDs, so head there if you need more information.
When it comes to microSD cards, it’s important to check the maximum size that your device can accept. Dash cams are particularly limited in this aspect, and most will only support up to 32GB of storage - the limit of the SDHC standard.
Most phones, on the other hand, support up to 256GB, while a few can be pushed to a whopping 2TB. microSD cards larger than 32GB are called SDXC cards and can be used by all devices that support the standard. 2TB is the theoretical limit, but in reality, you can only buy up to 1TB microSD cards right now.
If you’re looking for a microSD card to record video, look for one with a V10 logo or better – the number after the V denotes the guaranteed write speed in MB/s. For mobile devices, look for an A1 or A2 logo. A2 is the faster of the two, but A1 cards should be fast enough to run apps and games.
We’ve got more detailed buying advice in our article detailing the best microSD cards, so head over there if you need more information.
You can upgrade your PS4 or Xbox One’s internal HDD with an SSD to increase general performance, but this requires you to open the console. The other option is to look for USB 3.1 powered external SSDs that both extends the storage of your console and improves performance for games stored on the drive.
If you’re not technically confident, we’d recommend opting for the latter – especially as console-focused external SSDs are rapidly dropping in price.
Where to find the best storage deals
While the retailer depends on the type of storage you’re after, generally speaking, you can pick up storage devices of all shapes and sizes from PC and electrical-focused stores like Currys PC World, GAME, Overclockers UK and, of course, Amazon. The huge online retailer offers great savings on storage devices all-year-round, but these are especially tempting during the Cyber Monday sales.
The tastiest deals often come in the form of Lightning Deals, but there’s a catch; Lightning Deals often have limited stock and are only available for a limited time.
If you find you keep missing out on Lightning Deals, we’d recommend signing up to Amazon’s 30-day free trial of Prime. It provides 30-minute early access to Lightning Deals along with free delivery, Prime Video and all the other benefits of the Prime subscription.
Best Cyber Monday storage deals
1. SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD (1TB)
Now: £129.99 (£105 off)
Get a great price on this 1TB portable SSD from SanDisk, with almost half off the RRP. It can handle speeds of up to 550MB/s and is also shock-, water- and dust-resistant.
2. Kingston Data Traveller USB Drive (64GB)
Now: £7.99 (£8.82 off)
Featuring a metal casing and a handy keyring hole to attach to your keys, this 64GB USB 3.0 USB Drive is ideal for day-to-day use.
3. SanDisk High Performance Class 10 microSD Card (64GB)
From: Currys PC World
Now: £19.99 (£5 off)
If you're in need of a high-performance microSD card for your Nintendo Switch or Switch Lite, this 64GB capacity card from Currys PC World is a great, budget-friendly choice.
4. SanDisk microSDXC UHS-I for Nintendo Switch (256GB)
Now: £42.99 (£35 off)
If you want more than 64GB of storage and don't mind spending a little more money, this 256GB Switch-themed microSD card is great value at only £42.99.
5. SanDisk Ultra 128GB microSDXC Memory Card + SD Adapter
Now: £16.79 (£16.46 off)
If you need storage for your smartphone or a 1080p action camera, this deal from Amazon is great value and the cheapest we've seen so far.
6. LcCie 4TB Rugged
Now: £130.72 (£19.27 off)
One of the most rugged drives around, LaCie makes a trustworthy USB-C drive which is shock, rain and pressure resistant.
7. Seagate Game Drive for PS4 (4TB)
Now: £80.99 (£29 off)
If you prefer volume of storage over speed, this 4TB PS4 Game Drive will allow you to download and store a lot of games. There's also an Xbox One version at the same price for Microsoft fans.
8. Asus FX Aura Sync External HDD (1TB)
From: Overclockers UK
Now: £59.99 (£9.96 off)
If you're on the market for an RGB-infused external hard drive to complement your gaming setup, you can pick up this Asus FX Aura Sync USB 3.1 portable hard drive.