Home Gadgets Optical media still not dead: Next-generation Blu-ray DVD disc offers 1TB capacity

Optical media still not dead: Next-generation Blu-ray DVD disc offers 1TB capacity

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Optical media still not dead: Next-generation Blu-ray DVD disc offers 1TB capacity

With the continuous development of streaming media, the new generation of the Internet has gradually away from optical drives, CD-ROMs and floppy disks and other terms, and many people have not even seen a DVD. But in a sense, optical media is not completely extinct, at least not yet.

Folio Photonics, an American startup, wants to swim against the tide and open up a new market for optical media.

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Folio Photonics CEO Steve Santamaria says the company’s first disc will have an initial capacity of “over 1TB capacity” and aims to reach 10TB+ by the end of the 20s. They call this disc the successor to Blu-ray and hope to lead the next generation of optical media upgrades.

Travis Johnston, director of the marketing strategy at Folio Photonics, added: “While actual specifications have not been released, we believe that this capacity and proposed pricing is achievable based on our materials/manufacturing innovations. achievable based on our material/manufacturing innovations.”

By comparison, a blank 25GB BD-R Blu-ray recordable media disc costs less than $0.40, which translates to about $16 per TB, more than five times more expensive than the products mentioned above.

While these discs look very impressive, Folio Photonics optical disk drives (ODDs) are initially very expensive, at least $3,000 to $5,000. Considering the history of CDs and DVDs and Blu-ray recorders, few people will want to use them unless they can be mass-produced and the cost benefits can be spread out to a very low level.

Philips introduced a desktop CD burner, the CDD521GN, 30 years ago at a debut price of $8,495, and four years later HP squeezed the cost down to a tenth of its level and introduced the Surestore CD burner. Today, however, you can buy a CD burner online for a few dollars.

Folio Photonics hopes to compress the cost of 10TB media to less than $1 per TB by 2030, but that’s an achievement that neither LTO nor HDD can achieve.

It’s worth noting that its commercial disks and drives are not expected to be available until 2026 and may be better suited for data center and hyperscale enterprise optical data storage solution customers, which is a relatively “profitable” product for the enterprise, unlike the retail market.

Of course, you may ask: what is the significance of this kind of disc when 1TB SSD only costs a few hundred dollars now?

In fact, the reason is very simple, a lot of data need to be stored for a long time, but both mechanical hard drives and solid-state drives are difficult to do “long-term”. The Blu-ray media does not need a constant temperature and humidity environment outside and does not rely on magnetic preservation of data, so the environmental requirements are low, and it does not need to consume more power resources to maintain the storage environment. In addition, Blu-ray media does not have to worry about demagnetization, and has at least 50-100 years of life, which is also significantly higher than magnetic tape and disk. Therefore, considering the long-term cost, Blu-ray storage has a very high-cost performance.

On a side note, you may see “human civilization regressing due to the destruction of electronic data” in post-apocalyptic/waste-earth games/novels, but it is not appropriate to use physical solutions such as paper to record all critical information, so CD-ROM is really an effective way for long-term data preservation from a certain perspective.