Update on Eye-Fi Bricking their older cards

 

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I received this in my email tonight:

UPDATE: Information Regarding “End of Life” (EOL) of X2 and Prior Generation Products

We have started work on a new desktop software utility designed to enable impacted cards to continue operating beyond the previously announced EOL date of September 15, 2016.  The new software is called the “Eye-Fi X2 Utility” (X2U) and will be provided free of charge as a download.
The X2U will enable cards impacted by the EOL to transfer images to a desktop computer via an Infrastructure or Direct network connection.  The utility will be made available in early August on the Mac (OS X) platform.  We are also exploring the feasibility of offering the X2U on the Windows platform but are unable to commit to availability at this time.  We will provide updates should this situation change.
X2U will be a one-time release provided to enabled continued use of an EOL impacted card for desktop transfer only on a transitional basis.  The utility will not have the full capabilities of Eye-Fi Center and/or Eye-Fi View.  ALL other Eye-Fi provided software will have to be uninstalled prior to installing the X2U on a supported device.  The company will provided X2U documentation and knowledge base but no help desk support, no warranty and restrictive terms of service.
More information about this project will be available in this Community section the week of August 8th.
[image credit: eye-fi]

Bye Bye, Eye-Fi

Eye-Fi has decided to discontinue the services that support their older X1 and X2 cards, which is a shame – they’re capable workhorse cards that can transfer photos directly to a smart phone using a private WiFi network or use their Eye-Fi Center to transfer photos to online services or your computer.

According to Eye-Fi, some features like direct mode may still work, but anything using their online service won’t work — if you haven’t created an account by September 16th 2016, you’re out of luck.

Eye-Fi stated in an email on June 20, 2016 stated that the company plans to continue “maintaining and increasing the quality, support, and service that you have come to know from [the Eyefi] team.”

An open letter to Eye-Fi on Hacker News sums up my complaints nicely. The change happened shortly after Ricoh acquired Eye-Fi, so claims that changing security protocols and compatibility with newer technologies sounds like an excuse.

I would have preferred a confirmation from Eye-Fi that local management of cards would still be possible. I’d like to know, for example, that I could “log on” locally to my card and change the Wi-Fi password or SSID and manage elements of my card that didn’t require their online services — or publish the means for people to write their own apps to manage the card locally if they didn’t want to support the cards past the EOL date.

It took a bit of work to get the latest Eye-Fi center to work with Windows 10, so I’m hoping it’ll limp along a little longer, until I buy a camera with built-in WiFi support or find another brand of WiFi SD card for my older cameras.