Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Will I Ever Buy Mechanical Storage Again In An End-Device?

I recently ordered an 11 inch MacBook Air. The machine uses flash memory for storage - there is no mechanical hard drive which makes it a lot thinner, lighter and quicker. It also makes the battery last longer. The optical drive (also mechanical) is also missing. If I need one of those I can purchase an external drive or share a drive on another machine.

This configuration certainly has me thinking. I remember buying a 10MB hard drive before I got married in 1985 for over $1000, figuring I would have enough storage to last me through the end of the millennium. So much for that theory - I think I upgraded to a 20MB drive the following year.

I’m now pretty sure my mechanical drive purchases in end-devices (laptops, tablets, etc) are over though and think this theory will hold, much like my move away from desktop machines. I gave up on desktop computers a few years ago and now run off a primary notebook that I attach to a mouse, keyboard and large monitor in my office. Very nice. I will likely continue to purchase external mechanical hard drives for backups for the next couple of years.

As far as optical computer disks go - I rarely use them and can’t remember the last time I purchased one. Apple just launched their Mac App Store and we’re going to see an explosion of all kinds of App stores, Software As A Service (SAAS), etc this year. This is likely the way I’ll be purchasing my Apps. It's the way I prefer to purchase them actually.

Blue-ray movie discs are a different story of course - at least for the time being.

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