This WAS an excellent product. Now, for many of us, it's worthless. In May, I took it with my iPad to the Amazon jungle in Peru and was able to read the CF card from my Canon DSLR using a small CF card reader. It was brilliant. I could review my day's photos and decide where to shoot the next day based on whether or not I was happy with my results.
Then came the updated iOS 4.2 operating system for the iPad right at the beginning of December, and now this kit cannot read a CF card using an external reader. This is because Apple reduced the power to the port that this plugs into specifically to prevent people from plugging useful things into the USB connector. That's why I say to ignore any review before that time. Earlier reviews are talking about a product that actually works as designed. Only reviews after that tell you what it can do if you buy it now.
Still, this might work for some people, depending on your needs. Here's where you stand.
1. You only have SD cards in your cameras. You're probably fine. The SD dongle still reads most of those.
2. You have CF cards and need to read them with an external reader. You are completely out of luck unless you use a powered USB hub. At that point, you're carrying so much junk around, you may as well just take your laptop, and you must be near an electrical outlet for it to work at all.
3. You have CF cards and can attach a USB cable directly to your camera. This is a crap shoot. Some cameras work and some don't. You can either borrow a CCK from someone to see if it works with yours or you can just buy it and hope.
Some may wonder if my one-star is a little too harsh, given that this device still works in some situations. Normally, I would agree, but there's another point at work here. This isn't about a device that never had the capacity to do something you might want it to do. For that you knock it down a star or two. This is a device that worked perfectly when it was released and that the manufacturer has intentionally crippled. Both the iPad and this kit are capable of working, but Apple has removed that functionality in software. When a company breaks their own product on purpose, I think that deserves one star.