BusinessWire: Addonics Technologies will begin shipping next week a lightweight (4.5 oz.) plug & play Compact Flash Card reader that uses the USB port to provide an easy, inexpensive and high speed way to transfer digital images or data to a PC or iMac.

Addonics Pocket Memory ReaderThe new product, called the Pocket Memory Reader, is designed for the mobile photography and mobile computing markets. It will allow users of digital cameras, personal digital assistants (PDA), personal organizers, voice recorders or other mobile electronic products using CompactFlash Cards or IBM's Micro Drive to by-pass the parallel port and plug directly into USB. Since iMacs don't have a parallel port, this will give users a convenient way to transfer digital images and data.

The teal-colored translucent unit (same color as an iMac) weighs only 4.5 oz. and is 1.46 x 1.69 x .13 inches. Pricing will begin at $79.

Besides giving users an easy way to transfer images and data without needing any auxiliary power source, the device has an image and data transfer rate of over one megabyte per second. It also features hot-swapping without re-starting the computer system.

System requirements are one available USB port, MacOs8.1 or higher or Windows 98, one available CD-ROM drive, and 16MB RAM.

Last week, Addonics announced another key product -- a compact CD-Record/CD-Write (CD-RW) drive with PC Card and USB interface. Called the Pocket CDRW, the PCMCIA drive enables notebook PCs or USB-equipped desktop PCs or iMacs to record and playback digital quality sound and video, or to rewrite and backup data onto CD-R or CD-RW media. Available immediately, Addonics' 4 x 4 x 20 Pocket CDRW drive will be priced at $499 with either PCMCIA or USB interface cable.

(Sadly transfer speeds according to the website are only 500-800KB/sec which is kind of slow even compared to my parallel port reader).