Has HD Optical Missed the Love Boat?


With Hitachi’s announcement of a one terabyte hard drive with a 3.5″ profile, I got to wondering if it’s not too late for the current ‘next generation’ of optical discs. By the time HD-DVD and BluRay have settled their format war, or learn to coexist, that 1TB hard drive is going to have fallen significantly in price. I’m guessing that sooner rather than later, the price point of the hard drive and the price point of 20 HD movies will equalize.

So why go to the video store at all? Why not just load up a couple of externals with your PVR recordings and movie downloads — you can take it on the road with you! Even flash memory is looking like a competitor for optical, and all three of them compete with on-demand network streams where you’re not responsible for storing any data at all.

Regardless, all this bickering between the device manufacturers and content owners is getting nowhere fast. It seems that right now the only folks doing the hard work of keeping the format open and compatible are hackers. Meanwhile, the hard drive folks are stepping up the marketing to make storage cool. Movie on a stick, anyone?

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