Japanese tech giants Sony and Panasonic have announced a new collaboration with the aim of creating the next standard of optical discs by the end of 2015. The new discs will have a storage capacity of 300GB – equivalent to 60 standard DVDs or six Blu-ray discs.
However, Sony has said that the new medium will be aimed at the professional market, catering to companies and organizations “with the objective of expanding their archive business for long-term digital data storage”.
“Optical discs have excellent properties to protect them against the environment, such as dust-resistance and water-resistance, and can also withstand changes in temperature and humidity when stored,” say Sony.
“They also allow inter-generational compatibility between different formats, ensuring that data can continue to be read even as formats evolve. This makes them a robust medium for long-term storage of content.”
This shift in focus towards archival purposes is no surprise. The proliferation of cloud storage, SSD memory and high-speed internet connections mean that the demand for high capacity physical storage is waning and the last update to the medium, Blu-ray, never really caught on as analysts predicted.
Despite this though, plenty of people still enjoy using discs to watch films and the like on simply for the ease of use. The new discs could also host movies in 4K definition (four times the resolution of current 1080p HD); these would be likely to take up more than 100GB of space, and streaming such content would be impossible without a top-tier internet connection.
Similarly, if 4K camcorders such as the GoPro HD HERO3 become more widespread then storing and editing the resultant footage would be more convenient using discs.