The end may have finally come for disc drives as the new Apple iMac was launched last week without the ubiquitous disc drive. Since these take a lot of space in the ever-shrinking gadgets that we find ourselves drooling over, there is apparently really no use anymore to manufacture disc drives for devices such as laptops, tablets, smartphones and even personal computers.
Michael Gartenberg, an industry analyst for research firm Gartner Inc., told the CNN that the optical disc may soon find itself as ancient as a floppy disk. Or can you still remember the 5-inch and the 3.5-inch floppy disk that went into oblivion decades ago?
Since Apple finally dumped the optical disc drive from its new iMac, it is safe to assume that other computer companies will follow suit. Remember that it was also Apple that first let go of the 5-inch and 3.5-inch floppy disks all those years ago. It has always prided itself for its innovation and its ability to take risks, and giving up the optical disc drive may be a risk worth taking.
According to Phil Schiller, the head of marketing for Apple, old technologies hold the company back.
“They’re anchors on where we want to go. We find the things that have outlived their useful purpose—our competitors are afraid to remove them. We try to find better solutions,” he told Time magazine.
But it is not only Apple that has finally scratched off the idea of putting disc drives on their devices. Sony has also announced that it will stop manufacturing the drives. Microsoft looks like it’s going to follow Apple and Sony as well since its latest Microsoft 8 can work on disc-free smartphones and tablets.
The end of these optical disc drives may actually have happened earlier; albeit, we never realized it. When the universal serial bus (USB) drives were introduced more than a decade ago, it should have been a signal that the end will also come soon for CDs and DVDs.
Can you still remember when you have to “burn” movies and music files into CDs and DVDs with cute designs of cartoon characters on them? Well, now that everything is going digital, Dropbox, Google Drive and Apple’s iCloud have completely wiped out those cute CDs and diskettes from our youth.
By signing up and paying a measly amount a year, heavy data users can now access their files from just about anywhere they go. Why mess up your tables with CDs, USBs and even external hard drives when you can go on the Internet and check your files from your preferred cloud storage website?
Although some are still loyal to storing files in a physical device like the USB, more and more people are now seeing the wonders of using a cloud storage, especially because physical devices are prone to breakdowns.
In a world that is widely run by digital technology in business and personal aspects, it looks like disc drives have finally made its final bow.