When two huge international companies come to an agreement, chances are they’re planning to work on something big. Well, that was the assumption when Sony and Panasonic, both giants in the electronics world, recently signed an MOA. They immediately confirmed it, coming out with a timely press release announcing the partnership and saying that the objective is (drum roll please!) to develop a next-generation optical disc that offers big enough space to support 4K (Ultra-HD) format.
Japan’s Sony and Panasonic are looking to expand their collection of products by coming up with a digital data storage that is more durable than ever and shall target professional users. What is in their minds? A 300 GB recording disc before 2015 ends that will have an incredible capacity to support the 4K format!
So what made Sony and Panasonic think they can keep up with the HDD generation? Well, the two remain a believer of the excellent features of optical discs. Unlike the other rather sensitive storage solutions, CDs are dust and water-resistant, and they literally don’t mind the weather and the changing temperature. Moreover, they work well with various formats, making sure that even if formats change overtime, what’s been stored remain useful. Hence the idea of creating a storage solution that would be big and durable enough to last a lifetime.
Imagine if you can save all the important milestones in the life your child – from his 1st birthday and every year after that, his graduation, his marriage, and still be able to show it to your descendants’ descendants come 50, 60, even 80 years. Can the Blu-ray do that? No, it cannot.
Blu-ray cannot support Ultra-HD as much it wants to. The first movie in Ultra HD was released in 2012 and was 160 GB. It needed 7 layers of Blu-ray for storage and, between you and me, we both know that’s not something to be proud of.
But there’s a big setback: the cost. How much really are we talking about here? Blu-ray in itself is already regarded as luxurious and impractical, how much more a 4K disc that’s 7 times bigger than the Blu-ray? I’ve run out of adjectives to use for comparison.
It might not yet be the time for manufacturers to force into the market the idea of an optical disc with giant capacity. At least not yet, when Blu-ray discs are still actively working on their way up. If in case the 4K disc pushes through, then we’re in for an HD war, a very untimely one at that.