The original iMac lacking a floppy drive is often cited as justification for Apple's rumored removal of the DVD drive from the upcoming MBP. However this is BS. The original iMac was a desktop computer. You could easily add a USB-tethered floppy drive to it. This did not really affect you in a negative way, other than the fact that all those USB floppy drives were very slow. However the MacBook Pro is a portable computer. If you're someone like me that needs DVD, then you will have to carry around that annoying external USB thing with you everywhere. I throw my MBP into a sleek pocket in my camera bag. There is no space in there for an external USB DVD burner. However I need it. Even if I get a case that can hold it, I am often burning a DVD while sitting in my car, or even sometimes on a plane (pro photographer). Where do I put an external USB drive in that case...? Somewhere awkward. The current DVD drive in my MacBook Pro is flawless, fast, and reliable. Apple will replace it for free if it fails under my AppleCare agreement. I have used this service once or twice and it was critical for me. However if I buy a cheapo USB external DVD burner, most of them require TWO USB ports to operate. The MacBook Pro only has two USB ports. Therefore there is no way to directly burn a CompactFlash card to a DVD with this computer! It will first have to be copied to the hard disk, which basically doubles the amount of time for this operation. Further I would not put very much faith in the long-time durability of a $35 external USB DVD burner. So I hope Apple does not remove internal DVD as a BTO option for 15". I'm not going 17" ever. I use MacBook Pro because it's a swiss army knife, has everything I need built-in. I want to be able to boot from a DVD for startup volume recovery. I want to be able to burn DVDs for clients and install drivers for new hardware when I'm on location and don't have internet. DVD is a ubiquitous technology that makes it useful to hand people information on a DVD. It is an instant transfer of data from one person to another. When I go do research at the library, a lot of times the books have accompanying CDs or DVDs. I just don't want to have to deal with an external DVD drive on my portable computer. It's not like an iMac where I didn't care because it didn't matter. It matters when it's something that's portable, meaning you'll have to bring one extra THING around with you everywhere. On a desktop it doesn't matter because it just sits there and doesn't matter.