Predictions

by Mike Masnick




If Plastic Discs Are Dead, What's Next?

from the it's-all-just-data dept

Wired Magazine is now suggesting that discs are dead as a storage medium. With all the battling going on over the next generation of DVD technology, Wired's products editor, Robert Capps, notes that not very many people seem to care about the new "high definition" audio CDs that have come out. Instead, everyone's focused on getting an iPod and digitizing their music. While video is definitely more difficult to transport via the internet, the argument is that the technology is improving for compressing and transmitting larger files. Of course, it might be interesting to put Capps in a debate with Mark Cuban -- who also thinks that discs are dead, but that portable hard drives or flash drives will take their place. Cuban's argument is that "storage is expanding far more quickly than upload or download speeds to our homes," so it's going to be more efficient to move around hard drives than bits of high definition content. With some already experimenting with offering content on iPods, it is beginning to look like this battle for the next plastic disc technology may be a waste of time. Update: Then again, some analysts think discs will be big business for the next five years. Of course, analysts always seem to be overly positive in their predictions -- it's what helps sell reports.

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  1. identicon
    JazzCrazed, 22 Mar 2005 @ 4:46pm

    It's about time!

    I'm probably more extreme of an advocate for the death of circular discs than most, but I seriously can't wait for the day to come.
    Though, is it just me and my semantic nitpicking, or isn't CD audio also digital? Just because PCM doesn't see P2P action as much as MP3 doesn't make it any less digital. "Digital" has morphed into a catchword for all that's hip and online, it seems.
    I also wish Wired would quit beating the dead quality donkey in comparing prominent audio codecs unfavorably with CDs. Not everybody has a Marantz CD-14 connected via Acoustic Zens into a Bryston amp and a pair of Von Schweikert speakers to be able to tell the absurdly small difference between CDs and 320kbps MP3s, anyway.

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