Technology is moving forward at a startling rate, think about how we get music – over the last 50 years we’ve gone from using records which were great for random access play (lift the needle, move to a different place on the record and drop gently), but were easily damaged, and not very portable (how many cars did you see that would play records – or how many joggers running with a record player strapped to their back?) – then came the cassette tape, this had some advantages over the record, these were portable, supported R/W capability (get bored with the music you’re listening to, then record over the old content), but also had disadvantages, they were also somewhat fragile, and didn’t support random access. Then came the CD-Rom, these support random access, WORM cabability, are pretty robust, and portable (cars have CD players as standard, and of course portable CD-Players) – next came the portable MP3/WMA player, the RIO or iPod devices, these support WARM, are robust, portable, and support random access – best of all, you don’t need to purchase a music CD to get content onto these portable players, you can purchase and download content directly from iTunes, or MSN Music, or other music services – is this the beginning of the end for CD’s? – in some respects this is a good thing, the manufacture and distribution of physical media is expensive, it’s so much easier to get the music you want downloaded to your favorite music player devices.
So what does this have to do with DVD’s ? – Think about the changes in video technology, VHS Tapes, to DVD’s, and now video on demand from your cable provider, or video download over the internet to devices like the Akimbo – it’s not going to be long before internet bandwidth is capable of supporting live video over the wire without any need for a cable set top box, this means that we’re getting to the point when you won’t need to visit Blockbusters to get a DVD of the latest movie, you can simply order online, download to your media player and watch whenever you want – and with the introduction of portable media players like the Portable Media Center you really can get your media where and when you want it.