9 Best USB-C Thumb Drives

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Thumb drives have been around for many years now and during this time a common goal has been followed by manufacturers. Increase the capacity while reducing the size of the hardware. This has led to some pretty funky designs and with the introduction of USB-C, it’s fair to see that these designs are only going to get funkier.

Depending on a person’s lifestyle or career, the data being stored on thumb drives can vary considerably. This means that the requirements of these devices change from person to person. For example, if you are a writer, you probably don’t need to pay out for a 256gb drive. However, this sort of storage capacity will appeal to video editors and photographers.

Budget
best-budget-usb-c-thumb-drive
Patriot Stellar-C Type-C
4.1/5.0
Max Capacity: 64gb
Construction: Metal
Good performance for a great price.
Check Amazon
Best Value
best-value-usb-c-thumb-drive
Silicon Power C80
4.8/5.0
Max Capacity: 128gb
Construction: Metal
Strong metal construction and great security.
Check Amazon
Top Pick
top-value-usb-c-thumb-drive
Samsung 256gb Duo Plus
4.9/5.0
Max Capacity: 256gb
Construction: Metal
Super fast, rugged, and reliable thumb drive.
Check Amazon

USB-C

Everyone knows that USB-C is the future, but what does that term actually mean? Well, it actually means a few different things, depending on who you ask. Some people simply see USB-C as the next iteration of the cable and nothing more, while others will drown you in tech specs, explaining why the new connector is superior to everything else available to us.

The most important thing to know is that eventually USB-C is likely to become the industry standard and all devices will eventually adopt this new connector. Therefore it’s safe to assume that USB-C thumb drives will also become the standard for most people. Another factor that applies to thumb drives is that USB-C allows for faster data transfer. The gen2 connectors boast speeds of up to 10gbps, 20x faster than USB 2.0 which is quite a significant improvement.

Things to consider when choosing a thumb drive

Deciding what thumb drive to purchase can be a tricky thing, especially if you aren’t quite sure what you need. Therefore, it’s important to figure out exactly what you need from your thumb drive. Here are a few factors to consider.

To start, a good rule of thumb is to always go bigger than you think you need to. If you think you will only need a 64gb for example, go for a 128gb. Most of the time people are too conservative with their estimates and then have to potentially buy a second drive, which isn’t ideal.

A lot of drives come with data security. This could include password protection or fingerprint scanning. The level of security you need will depend on what data you will be putting on the device, but you should always at least make sure to have password protection.

You should also make sure that the thumb drive has a manufacturer warranty. The terms of these warranties vary so check the fine print. It is also important to note that warranties included with the device are worth it, while extended plans from retailers are not.

You should also make sure the thumb drive you buy is built to last. Password protection isn’t worth a thing if the device falls apart after minor wear and tear. It’s a good idea to stick to drives with metal casings. If you need to buy plastic, you should at least check the cap has a tether. If the thumb drive is going to be exposed to the weather a lot, waterproofing is also worth listing as a requirement.

USB-C Thumb Drives Comparison Table

Make and ModelMax CapacityConstructionPrice
SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive USB-C256gbPlastic/MetalCheck Price
Kingston 64gb DataTraveler Micro Duo 3C128gbMetal Case/Plastic CoverCheck Price
SanDisk 128gb Ultra USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive128gbPlastic/MetalCheck Price
Integral 128gb Fusion USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive128gbMetal/RubberCheck Price
Silicon Power C80128gbMetalCheck Price
Samsung 256gb Duo Plus USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive256gbMetalCheck Price
Patriot Stellar-C Type-C/USB 3.1 64gb Flash Drive64gbMetalCheck Price
Sony USM-CA164gbMetal/SiliconCheck Price
Silicon Power Mobile C3164gbMetal/PlasticCheck Price

Now that we’ve established what makes a good thumb drive, let’s look at the top ten drives on the market today.

1. SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive USB-C

SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive USB-CView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.2/5

Although this thumb drive doesn’t tick all the boxes in terms of design and security, it is still one of the best USB-C options available.

Sporting both USB-A and USB-C connectors, this thumb drive is very versatile. As a SanDisk product, it can also be used with their Memory Zone App which is packed with cool features. Essentially the app acts as a middleman between the thumb drive and your smartphone. It combines the most popular memory management utilities into one, including a file browser, backup, file compression, and even an integrated media player.

It has some of the best performance specs available in a flash drive with read speeds of up to 150mb/s. Write speeds vary based on the capacity of the drive. It is important to note that just because the device boasts speeds of up to 150mb/s, it doesn’t mean that’s what you will actually get from it. You should expect speeds to be slightly lower than advertised.

The Sandisk Ultra has a mix of plastic and aluminum forming the casing but the good thing is that the casing is very thick. This makes the device very durable and therefore you shouldn’t need to worry about the occasional drop.

With capacity options all the way up to 256gb, there is a model for everyone. One thing that has been mentioned about the 256gb variant is that it gets quite warm when under heavy loads. This isn’t enough to cause concern but it may be worth taking into consideration.

Price of course also varies depending on capacity. The most expensive option costs roughly $60. This isn’t bad considering what the device offers, however, at this price point and all metal construction would have been nice.

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Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1, Read speeds up to 150mb/s, Write speeds vary by capacity
Casing: Metal and Plastic
Security: SanDisk Memory Zone App
Capacity: 16gb, 32gb, 64gb, 128gb, 256gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Fast Read Speeds
Uses USB 3.1
Metal provides durability
Feature rich
Allows for backups
Plenty of options to choose from
Reasonably Priced
The Cons
Write speeds should be specified
Plastic could create weak areas in the construction
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
Could be considered too expensive

2. Kingston 64gb DataTraveler Micro Duo 3C USB / USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive – 100mb/s

Kingston 64gb DataTraveler Micro Duo 3C USB / USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive - 100mb/sView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.1/5

The Kingston DataTraveler is a great option, especially for those looking to use it with their phone. It’s small, compact size makes it a perfect choice for anyone looking to use it on the go. It also features both USB-A and USB-C connectors, giving it a lot of versatility.

The performance stats of this thumb drive aren’t the fastest on this list, but they are still very reasonable. With read speeds of up to 100mb/s, the device shouldn’t feel sluggish even under heavier loads. Write speeds will always be significantly lower and although 15mb/s isn’t the highest, it definitely isn’t the slowest either.

The casing on this thumb drive is made of high-quality aluminum, so you can rely on the device to take a lot of punishment. The cover, however, is plastic so there’s a possibility it could break or come off if dropped onto a hard service.

The thumb drive doesn’t have any built-in security but it does come with a 5-year warranty, meaning that the hardware at least, is covered.

Although there isn’t a 256gb variant of this thumb drive, it does offer a 128gb model which should provide plenty of storage for most people. The minimum 32gb device is also relatively cheap, meaning you are getting value for money.

The pricing varies slightly depending on where you shop but Amazon is selling the 128gb for approximately $50 on their site, which is a pretty good deal for a thumb drive sporting that amount of storage.

If you are looking for a small, efficient device, this could be for you.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1, 100mb/s Read, 15mb/s Write
Casing: Metal Shell, Plastic Cover
Security: 5 Year Warranty
Capacity: 32gb, 64gb, 128gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Fast Read Speeds
Uses USB 3.1
Metal provides durability
Decent warranty
Decent range of options to choose from
Reasonably Priced
The Cons
Write speeds should be specified
Plastic cover could get damaged or break
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
16gb and 256gb variants would have been nice
Could be considered too expensive

3. SanDisk 128gb Ultra USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive – 130mb/s

SanDisk 128gb Ultra USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive - 130mb/sView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.5/5

The second entry from SanDisk on this list comes in a much sleeker form factor. This has been achieved with a unique design that allows the drive itself, to retract back into a protective shell. The majority of the casing is made from plastic but because of the strong outer shell, it should provide adequate durability.

Performance is almost identical to our previous SanDisk entry. It uses USB 3.1 and has read speeds of up to 150mb/s. Again, write speeds vary based on capacity.

Security comes in the form of the SanDisk Memory Zone App, allowing all data to be backed up to a cloud. This doesn’t stop the data on the thumb drive from being compromised, but at least you will have a backup if any data is lost.

Capacity options vary from 16gb to 128gb, so you aren’t getting as much choice with this device as you would with some others, however, it still offers decent storage at each price point.

Pricing varies from anything up to roughly $40, making this even better value for money than the previous entry. You are also getting access to the app which gives you added features. The tradeoff is basically a hard aluminum shell or a feature-rich app. It depends on what you value more as a user.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1, 150mb/s
Casing: Metal & Plastic
Security: SanDisk Memory Zone App
Capacity: 16gb, 32gb, 64gb, 128gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Very Fast Read Speeds
Uses USB 3.1
Metal provides durability
Decent warranty
Decent range of options to choose from
Reasonably Priced
The Cons
Write speeds should be specified
Plastic cover could get damaged or break
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
16gb and 256gb variants would have been nice
Could be considered too expensive

4. Integral 128gb Fusion USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive – 90mb/s

Integral 128gb Fusion USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive - 90mb/sView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4/5

As is the case for many thumb drives on this list, the Integral Fusion has both USB-A and USB-C connectors.

Although this device offers USB 3.1, the read speeds of the 128gb variant are a little slow when compared to other thumb drives. 90mb/s is still fairly quick but when you have devices easily offering over 100mb/s it’s hard to ignore. The write speeds are admirable but could also be a little faster.

The casing is made using a zinc alloy. It also has a rubber coated cap so the device is extremely durable. In fact, this combination of materials makes the Fusion arguably the most durable device on this list.

There’s no built-in security on this device either, but it does have a two-year warranty. This is far from the best offerings on this list but it’s still something.

The capacity of this version is 128g but there are other variants sporting lower capacities. The device varies in color and write speeds depending on the capacity of the model.

At approximately $65, the 128gb variant is decently priced. This thumb drive isn’t the fastest but the design is very well thought out and justifies its price tag.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1, 90mb/s Read, 15mb/s Write
Casing: Zinc Alloy, Rubber Cover
Security: 2 Year Warranty
Capacity: 128gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Modest Read Speeds
Modest Write Speeds
Uses USB 3.1
Metal provides durability
Rubber Cover provides more protection than plastic
It has a warranty
Plenty of storage
Premium quality for the price
The Cons
Not the fastest speeds
Rubber hinge could tear
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
Warranty should be longer
A 256gb variant would have been nice
Could be considered too expensive

5. Silicon Power C80

Silicon Power C80View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

Another device on this list featuring USB-A and USB-C connectors, this device ticks almost all the boxes except maybe price.

This thumb drive offers better features in terms of security. The hardware is protected by COP technology, meaning the device is resistant to dust, vibrations, and water. There is also a file management application which allows for one-touch backups. On top of that, you get a 5-year warranty which is always a bonus.

The casing is made from a zinc alloy making the device extremely durable. It also features an ergonomic design making the thumb drive easier to use and grasp. The swivel feature adds an extra layer of durability to the device as well because it avoids the need for loose or hanging parts.

The drive has a capacity of 128gb. The read and write speeds of this device are unfortunately not specified, however, given its price point you can expect the device to perform well. We were also unable to find any reports suggesting the speeds are slow which is positive.

At around $47, this thumb drive offers a lot for its price tag. It might not be for everyone but if it meets your specific needs, it should prove to be great value for money.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1
Casing: Zinc Alloy
Security: COP Technology, File Management App, 5 Year Warranty
Capacity: 128gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Uses USB 3.1
Metal provides decent durability
COP technology protects the device against the weather
File management app is feature rich
Good warranty
Plenty of storage
Premium quality for the price
The Cons
Read and Write speeds not specified
Larger than most on this list
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
A 256gb variant would have been nice
Could be considered too expensive

6. Samsung 256gb Duo Plus USB-C 3.1 Flash Drive

Samsung 256gb Duo Plus USB-C 3.1 Flash DriveView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.9/5

This thumb drive is arguably the best entry on this list for a number of reasons. Firstly, like many of the other devices on this list, the drive has both USB-A and USB-C connectors. It also uses USB 3.1.

What really makes this device stand out though, is the 300mb/s read speeds. This is by far the fastest thumb drive on this list, with the closest challenger clocking speeds that are half as fast.

Unfortunately, there’s no built-in security or special app for this one, but the hardware is protected against pretty much anything and on top of that you get a 5-year warranty, just in case.

With a 256gb capacity, the drive is capable of holding plenty of data and coupled with the read speeds, you are unlikely to ever face problems when it comes to transferring and storing data on the drive. Of course, problems such as faulty hardware can’t be ruled out but it shouldn’t be a concern to you with this device.

Priced at around $80, it isn’t exactly cheap. However, when you compare it to other thumb drives at this price point, it’s fair to say that you are getting value for money. It won’t be for everyone, but if money is no object to you, this drive is a solid investment.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1, 300mb/s Read
Casing: Metal
Security: Waterproof, Shock-proof, Temperature-proof, Magnet-proof, X-Ray-proof, 5 Year Warranty
Capacity: 256gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Uses USB 3.1
Super fast Read speeds
Metal provides decent durability
Well protected against all conditions
Good warranty
Plenty of storage
Premium quality for the price
The Cons
Write speeds not specified
Larger than most on this list
Detachable parts could get lost
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
Most expensive on this list

7. Patriot Stellar-C Type-C/USB 3.1 64gb Flash Drive

Patriot Stellar-C Type-C/USB 3.1 64gb Flash DriveView on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.1/5

The Patriot Stellar is a compact drive which doesn’t excel in a single area but it is also no slouch in any area either.

It too features USB-A and USB-C connectors, giving it great versatility. It also supports USB 3.1, with read speeds of up to 110mb/s. The write speeds have also been specified for this device and clock in at a decent 20mb/s. This makes it slightly faster than some of the thumb drives on this list.

The casing is an all-metal construction, including the cover, so you don’t need to worry about the occasional drop. The device will hold up just fine.

Unfortunately, the device has no built-in security features or an accompanying app. It also only has a 2-year warranty which isn’t ideal. If security is important to you, it’s probably worth looking at something else.

Its modest 64gb capacity isn’t that high by today’s standards, but unless you are a photographer, videographer or someone working with graphics, it should provide you with enough storage.

Priced at around $25, you are more or less getting what you pay for. It doesn’t offer any special features or the most storage, but it does give you a small, solid thumb drive that will do most of the things asked of it.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1, 110mb/s Read, 20mb/s Write
Casing: Metal
Security: 2 Year Warranty
Capacity: 64gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Uses USB 3.1
Modest Read speeds
Metal provides decent durability
It has a warranty
Modest storage
Good value for money
The Cons
Faster Read speeds would have been nice
Larger than most on this list
Detachable parts could get lost
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
Warranty should be longer
Larger options would be nice

8. Sony USM-CA1

Sony USM-CA1View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.3/5

The Sony USM-CA1 is another device that doesn’t stand out in any area but does a decent job in most.

Again, it is a drive sporting both USB-A and USB-C connectors as well as USB 3.1. It also has read speeds of up to 130mb/s which puts it towards the higher end of this list when it comes to performance. Though, the write speeds haven’t been specified.

The thumb drive has an all metal construction and comes with a silicon cover. Therefore, you should have no concerns about the device getting damaged. Sony has also managed to keep the device small and compact, so thumbs up for that.

Security really lets this device down. There’s no built-in security, no app, and surprisingly, we were unable to find anything to say there’s even a warranty. Although considering this product is coming from Sony, it is still safe to assume there is one.

There are a few options available when it comes to storage. The device comes in three variants, 16gb, 32gb, 64gb. This puts it towards the lower end in terms of capacity but for anyone not looking to store huge amount of data on their drive, it will do just fine.

The most expensive version of this device, the 64gb, can be bought for around $50. This isn’t the cheapest price for a 64gb drive but being a Sony device, you are guaranteeing quality. That being said, given the lack of security features, it could be worth looking elsewhere.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1, 130mb/s Read
Casing: Metal/Silicon
Capacity: 16gb, 32gb, 64gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Uses USB 3.1
Modest Read speeds
Decent Write speeds
Metal provides decent durability
Silicon case provides an extra layer of protection
Possible warranty considering it’s a Sony product
Modest storage options
Premium Quality
The Cons
Faster Read speeds would have been nice
Detachable parts could get lost
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
No specified warranty
Larger options would be nice
Hard to find a seller online
Lack of security features make this device pricey

9. Silicon Power Mobile C31

SIlicon Power Mobile C31View on Amazon

Editor’s Rating: 4.4/5

The Silicon Power C31 is another feature-rich thumb drive that ticks almost all the right boxes.

It has USB-A and USB-C connectors and also supports USB 3.1.

The construction is made up of a metal body and a plastic cover. The latter could prove to be a weak spot in the design but will probably hold up just fine.

The security of this device is very good. First of all, it uses COB technology to protect from all sorts of weather conditions. It also has a supporting file management app, allowing you to back up your data and on top of that, it has a 5-year warranty. All of this put the device near the top of this list when it comes to the security of both the device and your data.

It has a few different storage options to choose from, starting at 16gb and ending at 64gb. This means that if you are not a heavy user, there will likely be a version of this device to suit your needs. It would have been nice to see a 128gb variant but 64gb should still be enough for most people.

The device is decently priced, with the 64gb model costing around $40. This is an average price for a thumb drive of this capacity, but with the added bonus of the security features, you are probably getting slightly more value for your money.

amazon

Tech Specs
Connectors: USB-A and USB-C connectors
Performance: USB 3.1
Casing: Metal/Plastic
Security: COP Technology, File Management App, 5 Year Warranty
Capacity: 16gb, 32gb, 64gb
The Pros
Can be used to transfer data between multiple devices that use different ports
Uses USB 3.1
Metal provides decent durability
COP technology protects the device against the weather
File management app is feature rich
Good warranty
Modest storage options
Premium Quality
The Cons
Read and Write speeds should be specified
Plastic cover could be prone to damage
No built-in password protection
No fingerprint scanner
Larger options would be nice
Hard to find a seller online
Lack of security features mean this device isn’t great value for money
4.3/556 ratings