Blu-Ray may NEVER happen in a Mac "desktop replacement"

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by MowingDevil, Sep 29, 2008.

  1. MowingDevil macrumors 68000


    Jul 30, 2008
    Vancouver, BC & Sydney, NSW
    I might look real bad saying this so close to a notebook revision but I have a feeling Apple doesn't want to go this way & I can't really blame them. The entire entertainment industry might just choose to pass this format by before it even gets a chance to really take off. Here's what I'm thinking...

    The future looks to be hard drives & streaming units hooked up to your TV and also connected to the internet or via a computer...w/ sites like iTunes really getting behind the movie side of things Blu-Ray is in direct competition w/ iTunes for those movies. Besides, who really needs a library of discs taking up valuable shelf space & making clutter (Feng Shui anyone?) when you can have an entire library of HD movies ON your computer or iTV/box? For those you don't want to buy you can rent and not have to leave the home. Seriously, as much as CDs are dead for music, DVDs and Blu-Ray are going to be toast for movies as well. Its the future and eventually we're not going to have a need for all these discs (environmental footprint/non-recycling). Its not hear now, but give it a little bit of time and it could be a non-starter. The format that 'could have been.'

    Apple was the first to push out the floppy drive, w/ the Air they've taken a MAJOR step first it a little hard for the average consumer to comprehend but now it makes perfect sense. Microsoft said years ago they didn't want to ship fact they don't even want to sell you the software, they'd rather rent Windows & Office to you for a monthly fee. Everything is going to be wireless soon enough and with more bandwidth and cheaper memory there is going to be no need for the ill-fated Blu-Ray format.

    If Apple comes out with a tricked out iTV to compete w/ the other brands available (they are starting to fall behind a bit) then that will be quite a statement if there's no Blu-Ray in the next round of notebooks. They should get rid of the Airport & Time Machine, incorporate them both into the iTV and add some USB ports for our printers etc. Brick maybe? I'd buy one.
  2. Minimoose 360 macrumors 65816

    Minimoose 360

    Jul 7, 2008
    I'm saying, death to Blu Ray. Bring back Laserdisc!!!

    Give me a 12" Laserdisc drive in my new Macbook Pro! I'll take that over Blu Ray any day.

  3. jaytv111 macrumors regular

    Oct 25, 2007
    I thought downloads would be better than Blu Ray as well, but we still have a long ways to go for downloads to become the format of choice. First there's DRM. I personally don't like the thought that I can only play my movies on one (or whatever finite number of) device(s), whereas with Blu Ray I can play it on any Blu Ray player. Second, internet speeds are still a problem. It will be at least five more years until we see more significant fiber to the home or fiber to the premises installations in the marketplace. Also keep in mind the recent trend of bandwidth capping. Increasingly ISP's will charge you if you go over a certain bandwidth threshold, which can be quite low in some circumstances. So frankly, HD downloads aren't ideal as of right now. I believe that for now, Blu Ray will do, but it won't be critical if Apple doesn't offer it in the next round of revisions. There simply is very little demand for Blu Ray in notebooks, it's far more ideal to use a PS3 or dedicated player, but still, I expect one day to be able to take advantage of Blu Ray in a notebook, be it Mac or PC.

    also if you really want a laserdisc player in the MBP it'll make the MBP at least twice as thick as it is now, so I'm guessing that'll be the real brick!:)

    Edit: let me add this too, I think DVD's will still be dominant in the marketplace, they're cheap and reliable, and as long as they're available, people will use them.
  4. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    Mmm I just dug up my Pioneer LaserDisc player from storage. Still works!
  5. jaytv111 macrumors regular

    Oct 25, 2007
    funny enough i compared the MBP to a laserdisc and talked to a friend about integrating a laserdisc player into the MBP. let's just say the laserdisc is bigger than the MBP!
  6. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    Thank you for saving me a lot of typing. This is the daily "discs are dead!" post that lies mostly in pipe dream and not much in fact.

    OP mentioned the death of the floppy drive. There are a bazillion things that killed those off. First of all, that technology was a good 20 years old, if not older, without any changes. Ironically to the point, re-writable CDs and flash memory (plus that Internet thingy) helped kill off floppies (for the most part). Don't forget how unreliable those were for actually keeping data. That stupid metal thing bent a little and your data was toast.

    OP also mentions cluttering up shelves with DVDs and BDs. Well, if you download HD movies, you're going to clutter somewhere with hard drives. No, not as much space, but it's not as if you won't have 2 or 3 HDDs sitting around. You also forget about where your movies will be backed up to. If your HDD dies, your videos are gone. HDDs never fail, right? The most secure backups are...optical discs!

    Please, people. Stop and think about this whole stupid download fascination before jumping on. I haven't even gotten into the absolute lack of any special features on any videos sold online. They don't even have commentary tracks, which DVDs had from the start. Yet iTunes still sells new movies for $15, which is about how much they cost in the week of release. You also can't port them without an iPod. Even if you do that, you still need some sort of cable. If A/V makers would start making models with bluetooth or WiFi connectivity, you could possibly see the whole digital video thing having an immediate future.

    So basically, IMO, about 98 percent of the consumers will buy movies on optical discs. The real issue should be getting companies to let us rip video like we do audio. Rip those DVDs and BDs into iTunes and preserve all the extra content. Shoot, I'd even pay $50 for some activation of such an iTunes to do this. Then iTunes could perhaps sell disc images in the same format and THEN we can talk about downloads taking over.
  7. JadedRaverLA macrumors member

    Sep 27, 2008
    First off, let me say I respect your opinion (though I almost universally disagree with each point below). :)

    You've made two different comments here. One is that Apple would prefer to skip Blu-ray, which is almost certainly true... though I really don't think that's an option any longer. The second statement is that "the entire entertainment industry" might want to do the same, which is 100% absolutely, positively false. EVERY major studio, CE manufactuer, and retail store is HEAVILY behind Blu-ray at this point, and all of them have a vested interest in its success. (More on that below.)

    First I'll tackle the consumer. For the very small percentage of consumers who are very technically advanced, have nearly limitless bandwidth available, aren't bothered by downloading time and having to come up with their own storage system, and value some perceived "coolness" of downloading over the quality of Blu-ray, then sure... there will be more and more download systems coming. However, nothing thus far has shown any desire by most consumers for such a system. The latest market research by NPD shows that for every entertainment dollar spent on movies (between cinema, DVD/Blu-ray, and downloads) the breakdown is:
    - 81% for purchasing and renting discs (DVD/Blu-ray)
    - 18% for cinema
    - 0.6% for purchasing and renting downloads

    While that download number will only increase in time (what other way can it go), no manufacturer, studio, etc in their right mind would forgo the $25 billion + annual disc market to go after the relative pittance being made currently in downloads.

    As for the companies involved, while companies like Apple stand to gain from a transition to downloaded movies, virtually no one else does. Retailers are going to fight against downloaded media in a huge way as it would kill their major revenue stream, CE manufacturers are going to fight against attempts to have computers replace all of their products in your living room, movie studios are going to fight against giving away so much control of their product to tech companies, and internet providers are already fighting against the ever-increasing bandwidth consumed by downloaders. That's not saying that eventually all those sompanies won't either lose or capitulate, but there's a long way to go before we get there.

    Bandwidth is not NEARLY as "free" as you make it out to be. Among that 0.6% of the market that downloads currently hold, most of that comes from SD material. The HD material that's out there is almost all overcompressed 720p that's often indistinguishable from SD DVD. If you wanted to do true Blu-ray quality, be prepared for download sizes of Blu-ray (ie. up to 50GB per title). If even 2 or 3 percent of the current DVD market moved to downloads at those sizes this year, bandwidth caps would be instituted immediately, as the internet and ISPs are brought to their knees.

    Again, I agree Apple would love for such a product to be their next iPod-level success, but nothing really indicates that that's possible right now. Consumers decide what sells and what doesn't -- and consumers haven't indicated much interest yet in (legally) downloaded movies. Moreover, unless Apple is bound and determined to drive the pro video market over to the PC for good, they NEED proper Blu-ray support, as that's where the industry is now, not where Apple wants to move them over the next decade. It's great to be a forward looking company, but you can't force customers to transition to your vision of the future -- especially before they're ready.

    Anyway, all that's just my $.02.
  8. Firefly2002 macrumors 65816

    Jan 9, 2008
    It's common knowledge they're not going to release Blu-Ray. Your idea that it might be passed over as a format altogether has been voiced since before it was even out....
  9. MowingDevil thread starter macrumors 68000


    Jul 30, 2008
    Vancouver, BC & Sydney, NSW
    We shall see if it reaches the heights of the CD & DVD platform or if it is eventually passed over. Its not nearly there yet and has a long way to go. The Air is a step in the direction Apple would like to see its product line move forward. Sony Cryin' the Blues
  10. jaytv111 macrumors regular

    Oct 25, 2007
    well, look at it this way. We're not getting rid of discs, just like we're not getting rid of USB cables. We're still going to install software and operating systems through discs, and we're still going to watch movies on discs. Since Blu Ray is the next evolution of discs, it's logical that we will adopt Blu Ray since physical media itself has too much momentum.
    It's as if Apple (or someone else for that matter) didn't include USB 3.0 (when it comes out) because they want you to use wireless. We would miss out tremendously on a new and better standard, because they want you to use their Time Capsule or whatever.
  11. andrewdale macrumors 6502a

    Jan 28, 2008
    Memphis, TN
    I don't feel like reading all of this. It's a lot of words and I'm supposed to be paying attention in class right now. SO.

    Optical isn't dead. That's obvious. But it's dying. Just slowly, I think.

    While there is a market moving towards downloads, flash drives and etc., there is still a HUGE percentage of people who are not ready to move this way yet.

    I still like having my physical form and I like to buy the CD and rip it instead of buying the album from iTunes. (I also like having the option to listen to the "full resolution" recording even though it's still 44.1/16.) But, who's to say that this isn't going to slowly shift over the next decade.

    Bluray has a battle to fight, and it's doing very well right now. They've just got to find a way to fight it even better.
  12. Brien macrumors 68030


    Aug 11, 2008
    JadedRaver is correct. Apple must adopt BD to stay competitive in the editing/pro market. The OS doesn't have to support playback, but BTO BD drives *through Apple* will happen within a year or two.

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