What’s the Difference Between Photo Stick and Flash Drive 2021?

Difference Between Photo Stick and Flash Drive: Travel freak people always tend to capture pictures and take videos during their vacation. They want to capture those moments as a memory. Usually, you can store all your precious photos and videos on your phone or laptop. But the problem is your mobile storage may remain full. Also, any hardware or software issues may arise that can cause losing these things.

Therefore, you should always make a backup of your photos and videos. Portable storage like a flash drive and a photostick is not a new thing in this digital age. As you can store all of your photos and videos easily on a flash drive or a photostick.

Like other kinds of files (documents, texts, charts, PDFs, etc.), photos and videos are easy to lose due to variety of hardware and software accidents like fire, water, drop, etc. physical damage as well as virus, hijack, malware, ransomware, etc. invisible destroying. Therefore, it is of great necessity to make a backup of the import photos & videos. You can easily do the backup work with a photo stick.

Difference Between Photo Stick and Flash Drive

What is a Flash drive?

Flash Drive

USB flash drive is a device that stores data.  It comes with flash memory, along with an incorporated Universal Serial Bus interface. The data stored in it can be removed, reused, and is rewritable in nature. It can be used on any device that has a USB port. It is quite a versatile storage device. The flash drive comes with a USB connector that is well-protected and insulated electrically inside a rubber case.

There is a small printed circuit board that has integrated circuits mounted on the surface inside the casing. These flash drives come in different specifications. Specifications of a flash drive are:

  1. USB 1.0 (low-speed): This type of flash drive can transfer data at a speed of 1.5 megabits per second (Mbps).
  2. USB 1.0 (high-speed): This flash drive transfers data at 12 Mbps.
  3. USB 2.0: This flash drive is also called the Hi-Speed USB. This flash drive transfers data at 480 Mbps.
  4. USB 3.0.: This is also called the SuperSpeed USB, and it was launched back in 2008. It transfers data at a rate of 5 Gigabits per second.
  5. USB 4.0: It is expected to be released later in the year, and it will have an even high transfer rate. This makes it quite a reliable storage device especially when one needs to transfer some files.

What is a Photo stick?


Photo stick is NOT a general term for a device, rather it is a trademark name used for a device that transfers and stores photos. The Photo Stick is a device that is very much similar to a USB flash drive in its appearance. It locates personal videos and pictures on your system (computer or a laptop). The only thing that you have to do is plug in the Photostick and select ‘GO’; the device will do its work.

Apart from this, it will also locate any duplicate photo/video and delete it. This saves you the time that you’d take to remove them yourself. When the Photo stick is unplugged, all the photos will automatically be saved on the device. Most of the functions of this device can either be performed by a skilled user or some dedicated software.

Functions of the Photo stick are:-

  • Automatically deletes all the duplicate photos & videos.
  • Automatically saves the photos when finding on the computer.
  • Organizes the photo collection on its own.
  • Finds all the media present on the device with a single click.

What Is the Difference Between Photo Stick and Flash Drive : Functionality

The biggest difference between a photo stick and a flash drive is their functions. As a storage device, the main function of a flash drive is to save data, no matter photos/pictures/images/graphics, videos/movies or audios/music, program files, documentation, etc. It is used as an extra storage or data transfer device for computers. Besides, a USB flash drive can also be created as a bootable media to boot up crashed machines.

While for a photo stick, it is more like a flash drive with the specialized purpose of backing up and saving backed up photos, videos & maybe some other files. To be exact, if you really want to take a photo stick for other usages like storing other types of data or being created as a bootable stick, it is also possible.

Photo Stick vs Flash Drive: Capacity

In general, both photo sticks and flash drives have a variety of storage capacities and the capacities the photo sticks are larger than those of the flash drives. The common capacities of a flash drive are 8GB, 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB. Yet, the popular capacities of the photo sticks can be 1TB (1000GB), 512GB, 256GB, 128GB, 64GB and 8GB.

Why the capacity of a photo stick is larger than a USB flash drive? There are two reasons. On the one hand, since the photo stick is used for saving photos and videos that are usually large files, the storage device should be large enough. On the other hand, the built-in backup application will occupy a certain amount of space in a photo stick. Thus, to ensure enough storage to save the imaged pictures and videos, manufacturers usually equip them with large capacities.

What Is the Difference Between a Flash Drive and a Photo Stick: Applied Device/System

As you all know, in common situations, a flash drive is compatible with all computers including desktops, laptops, notebooks as well as tablets. As for operating systems, it supports Windows, Mac and Linux.

As for photo sticks, they support all the devices and OS that are supported by flash drives. Besides, the photo sticks can also be applied to mobile phones, cell phones or cellular phones. Therefore, photo sticks are also compatible with iOS and Android operating systems.Tip: Not every photo stick supports all devices and OS stated above. Some support iPhones while others support Android phones; some support Windows PCs while others support Mac computers. Also, there are photo sticks that support all smartphones and all computer devices.

Flash Drive vs Photo Stick: Appearance

It is mentioned in the above content that a photo stick is just a flash-drive-shaped device. That is, the photo stick looks very similar to a USB flash drive. The biggest difference is the data transfer port. Usually, there is only one USB-A port for connecting the USB flash drive and computers.

While for a photo stick, there are at least two ports with one for connecting the photo stick to a mobile phone and the other for connecting the photo stick to a computer. For those photo memory sticks that are compatible with both iPhones and Android phones, there are three or four ports (with a type-C port).

What Is the Difference Between a Photo Stick and a Flash Drive: How to Make Use of Them

Finally, let’s talk about how to make use of these two little storage devices.

Make Use of a Flash Drive

For a USB flash drive, to take it for saving data, just insert it into one USB port on your computer. Then, there should be a pop-up message telling that an external USB drive is plugged in or similar words, and you can get access to it from that message window. Or, if there is no such reminder, you can directly go to Windows Explorer and open the device. Then, you can store or back up any data to it just by copying and pasting.

If yours is a new flash disk or you are not satisfied with the current format of your USB drive, you can format/reformat it with MiniTool Partition Wizard, which is a professional and reliable hard disk partition management software. Yet, formatting a disk will destroy or overwrite all the data on it. So, make sure there are no import files on the flash drive before wiping it. Or, just move crucial data to another safe place or make a backup of them with MiniTool Shadow Maker.

  • Step 1. Connect your USB disk to your computer.
  • Step 2. Download, install and launch Partition Wizard on the machine. Do not install the program on the flash drive.
  • Step 3. Click on the partition of the flash disk and select Format.
  • Step 4. Specify the Partition LabelFile System as well as Cluster Size of the flash drive and click OK. Partition label is customized; available file systems are NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, EXT2, EXT3, EXT4 and Linux Swap; available cluster sizes are default, 512 bytes, 1 KB, 2 KB, 4 KB, 8 KB, 16 KB, 32 KB and 64 KB.
  • Step 5. Preview the changes of target flash drive partition and click Apply to save the changes.

If there are more than one partitions on the flash disk, just repeat the above steps and format them one by one. Yet, usually, there is only a single partition for a USB flash drive.

Furthermore, if you want to make your flash drive as a bootable device, you can continue to rely on MiniTool Partition Wizard.

How to Make Use of a Photo Stick

Here, it will take a famous photo stick ThePhotoStick (best photo stick) for example to show you how a photo stick works. As for other kinds of photo sticks, they are similar to ThePhotoStick on operations.

  • Step 1. Plug the photo stick into a USB port on your desktop or laptop.
  • Step 2. Then, the computer will automatically recognize the stick and issue a window allowing you to run the stick. If not, you can go to Windows Explorer, find the photo stick and double-click the Photostick software to run it.
  • Step 3. Click the Go button on the software interface. Then, it will begin to search the folders on your machine, find photos/videos within the folders and save a copy of those photos and videos in its own storage.
  • Step 4. Eject the photostick from your computer or just leave it connected to the machine.

If you get a new photo stick or just don’t want your current photo stick as a backup device anymore, you can reuse it as a common flash drive by reformatting it with MiniTool Partition Wizard following the user guide above.

Final View

Because of technological advancement, you will get more and more smart devices in your regular use. Photostick is one of the smart technologies among them. You already read the differences between a photostick and a flash drive. Both of the devices are portable and comfortable to use. But, the Photo stick device provides a more speed transfer system with a secure version.

This is why people pick up this gadget. Also, it has a great backup system to store unlimited photos and files along with two USB ports. So, you don’t have to use an extra port or OTG cable to transfer files. After considering all the facts you can pick the correct one. Let’s hope you find the right direction to choose the best one.

What Is the Difference Between a Photo Stick and a Flash Drive FAQ

How many pictures does a photo stick hold?

It depends on how large your ThePhotoStick drive is. For an 8GB photo stick, you can save 3,500 photos or pictures. For a 64 GB photo stick drive, it can contain up to 30,000 photos/images. As for a 128GB photo stick disk, it is able to hold up to 60,000 photos and graphics.

What files can ThePhotoStick find?

The photo stick can identify all picture and video files as well as some other types of files. Exactly, it can recognize standard JPEG files, MPEG4 files, MOV video files, PNG files as well as files with these extensions: JPG, GIF, TIFF, PCT, ICO, BMP, AVI, RAW and WMV.

How much does ThePhotoStick cost?

The price of a photo stick varies from its capacity. For an 8 GB PhotoStick, it costs $34.99. For a 64GB Photo Stick, it requires 49.99 US dollars. If you purchase a photo stick 128 (128 GB ThePhotoStick), you will spend $79.99.

What’s the alternative of ThePhotoStick?

Besides ThePhotoStick, there are many other photo sticks which can help to backup photos and videos on Windows PC, MacBook or other computers as well as mobiles (both Android and iOS), including but not limited to Picture Keeper, SUNSWAN 3.0 USB Flash Drive (photo stick for Android) and SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive 128GB (photo stick for iPhone/iPad).

Where to buy photo sticks?

You can get a photo stick on any online market place or Photostick Official Site

Last Updated on July 22, 2021 by Mark

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