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Apple Tries To Phase Out CDs With New Line Of Macs

Blu-ray Media, CD-R, DVD-R, TechnologyNancy Woo30 October 2012

Talk of the end has been happening for a few years now – no, not just the end of the world, but the end of the familiar data storage devices known as CDs, DVDs and Blu-Ray discs. With more digital downloads, virtual space creation, mp3 players and storage in the cloud, rumors have been spreading that the inevitable end of CDs is just around the corner. Vinyl and cassette tapes have faced their inevitable demise, so are CDs going down the same path?

Apple plays no small part in the shift from optical disc drives to alternative storage. Since 2008, Apple has been starting to phase out optical disc drives in their computers, but it has generally been slow and gradual. CDs are still a primary method of information transference for many people.

However, just a few days ago Apple announced their newest line-up of computers, and only two out of a slew of new computers contained a drive for discs. One of the reasons for this is that Apple is somewhat like a beauty pageant princess going for the gold – their computers just keep getting slimmer and slimmer, and the Macbook Air has long been too thin to contain room for a disc drive. But except for the Mac Pro and Macbook Pro without a Retina display, all other lines of Apple products, including the iMac, Macbook Air and Macbook Pro with Retina displays, all astonishingly lacked an optical disc drive.

The sleeker, slimmer models come at a price – there is no convenient way to use CDs, DVDs or Blu-Ray. While it’s true that other types of data are available, many people own collections of musical CDs, DVDs or Blu-Ray discs. And what about when professional data discs need to be accessed? If the end of the CD is in fact headed our way, the time has not come yet.

It’s not, though, impossible to access discs with any of the new Macs. All you would have to do is buy an external disc drive. Apple sells their USB SuperDrive for $79 and other brands are even cheaper. Is the transition to sleek worth the hassle? Many will think so, but the CD isn’t out of sight yet – Apple is just making us work a little harder for it now.

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