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Snow Leopard Is coming on a SD Card - Page 3

post #81 of 101
An interesting development from Disney:

http://www.engadget.com/2009/07/22/d...to-pass-on-by/

Now the cost is $11 more than the DVD alone so I'd guess that's what the storage format alone costs - likely an 8GB card as no separate compression is required.

If you cut out the DVD + printing and maybe shrink down the packaging a bit, the difference between an SD-only version of the movie and the DVD version is $9 more, maybe less. It should be quicker and cheaper to load movies onto an SD card too.

The motivation here for Disney will be their netbook line for kids rather than SJ on the board of directors looking to push another new thing with Disney support (e.g a move to SD and away from optical) but with a major company pushing (micro-)SD out as a distribution format, the costs will come down and maybe more studios will look towards doing the same.

The reality is that the future is thin and light. Few ultra-portables and certainly no netbooks ship with optical units. This means that they either have to use an inconvenient method of watching movie distributions such as dangling an external DVD or Blu-Ray drive off a USB port or the movie industry accommodates them by using a new distribution format, which works for all users from the smallest devices (even mobile devices with micro-SD) to the largest.

It doesn't have to replace it of course, it can just be an alternative.
post #82 of 101
A fascinating development from Disney! It will be interesting to see how it plays out.

I'm of the mindset though that we're already on the last of the ubiquitous physical distribution formats. Meaning, CDs, DVDs, and Blu-ray will likely continue to rule until network based distribution takes over. Massive amounts of money have already been sunk into the manufacturing and distribution channels of the existing media. The same is true for the requisite hardware on the consumer end of things. Even blu-ray hasn't taken over from DVD yet, and it offers improved fidelity as a justification for the higher price.
post #83 of 101
Snow Leopard on an SD card would be really nice... and looking at what I paid for it ($10 because I just bought a MacBook) that would be even better... but it would really cost Apple a lot of money.... if it comes on an SD card though... Props to you for the early inside info.
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post #84 of 101
There's virtually no chance that Snow Leopard will be distributed on an SD card.
More than half of Apple's Mac line doesn't have native SD capabilities yet.

This is about setting the Mac OS up for next year debut of SDXC, which will have faster speeds and much higher capacities.

If SD becomes the 2010 standard for Digital Cameras, Digital Video distribution, (Physical) Digital Music sales and Software Distribution, the economies of scale will be pretty fantastic.

No one medium has ever done all those before.
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post #85 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

If SD becomes the 2010 standard for Digital Cameras, Digital Video distribution, (Physical) Digital Music sales and Software Distribution, the economies of scale will be pretty fantastic.

No one medium has ever done all those before.

CDs accomplished all of that except for the digital camera part.

It doesn't seem that there would be any greater economy of scale beyond what we have now. CD/DVD manufacturing plants and distribution channels already enjoy as much benefit as is possible from economies of scale.

While SD might be desirable for other criteria, cost is not one of them. There's no way they will ever be as cheap to manufacture as CDs or DVDs. The actual materials and manufacturing costs of CDs are nearly zero for large scale distribution. Put another way, the actual materials and manufacturing are nearly free. The cost mostly comes from direct labor, overhead, and sunk costs in equipment. It would be nearly impossible to save in these areas by switching to another medium.

Distribution via SD cards has advantages, but IMHO cost isn't one of them.
post #86 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by dfiler View Post

CDs accomplished all of that except for the digital camera part.

Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dfiler View Post

It doesn't seem that there would be any greater economy of scale beyond what we have now. CD/DVD manufacturing plants and distribution channels already enjoy as much benefit as is possible from economies of scale.

While SD might be desirable for other criteria, cost is not one of them. There's no way they will ever be as cheap to manufacture as CDs or DVDs. The actual materials and manufacturing costs of CDs are nearly zero for large scale distribution. Put another way, the actual materials and manufacturing are nearly free. The cost mostly comes from direct labor, overhead, and sunk costs in equipment. It would be nearly impossible to save in these areas by switching to another medium.

Distribution via SD cards has advantages, but IMHO cost isn't one of them.

CDs and DVDs are essentially shiny plastic frisbees so you are correct here. the best SD could do is try to be competitive on price.

But the floppy was an encased medium as well and its price went drastically downward over time.

With Apple putting SD readers in Macs now, they must see something big upcoming in the tech to justify it. As Blu-Ray fans will tell you, Apple is very picky about supporting disc formats.
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post #87 of 101
I see the inclusion of an SD slot as more of a "why not" feature rather than an indication of "something big on the horizon".

This isn't like adding a physical drive such as a magnetic or optical drive. SD support is comprised of a few copper contacts and a chip that probably costs less than a dollar. It takes up so little space and costs so little that the inclusion isn't comparable to the dilemma of whether to include a full blown drive with moving parts etc.

Put another way, freeing laptop users from needing to carry around extra equipment is sufficient justification for an SD slot. Software distribution, even if a wise choice, isn't necessary to justify the SD slot.
post #88 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank777 View Post

There's virtually no chance that Snow Leopard will be distributed on an SD card.
More than half of Apple's Mac line doesn't have native SD capabilities yet.

SD readers are cheap.

NewEgg:
Koutech IO-RC320 3-in-1 USB 2.0 SD/MMC/MS MINI CARD READER - Retail
\tSupport - SD: Yes \t\t
Price:$7.98
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post #89 of 101
I disagree with this.

If SD cards are manufactured on a massive scale and used to the same degree as optical media, their cost of manufacture would also be next to nothing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dfiler View Post

While SD might be desirable for other criteria, cost is not one of them. There's no way they will ever be as cheap to manufacture as CDs or DVDs. The actual materials and manufacturing costs of CDs are nearly zero for large scale distribution.
post #90 of 101
I'm short on details as I've been working all weekend but I read this during a break. Possibly as a link on Reddit. So costs or not it looks like it is going to happen.

CDs are pressed real cheap and as such I don't believe Micro SD will initially be cheaper with respect to the cost of the storage media. Let's face it though 2GB or 4GB Micro SD cards are not that expensive out the plant door. They are likely going out the door for a couple of bucks.

In any event Apple doesn't do things like SD in the note books without good reason. I expect to see wide adoption by Apple. Now what the long term goals are I don't know but they must have been seeing industry convergence over the last year or so. Apple would be privy to info the general public doesn't have.

So yeah I expect a slow shift at Apple away from optical disks. For things like the coming tablets it is almost a requirement.


Dave
post #91 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

I'm short on details as I've been working all weekend but I read this during a break. Possibly as a link on Reddit. So costs or not it looks like it is going to happen.

There are articles going round about Blu-Ray in China being outsold by CBHD (China Blue HD) - a format that is an incarnation of HD-DVD:

http://www.engadget.com/2009/07/25/b...nd-theater-of/

If this is true, the optical format war is not over and is going to continue to cause consumers problems. This problem may of course be limited to China.

It seems to me that rather than have all these proprietary discs, readers/writers and formats, an already established standard would be far better. SD just levels the playing field for everyone.

Imagine the changes it makes to all devices. A lot of the noise and bulk in a games console as well as sluggish loading times comes from the optical unit. Sony could ship games for their PSP and PS3 on the same disc. The format isn't limited to a given size as the memory density isn't dependent on optical resolution, although multi-layers can help get round this.

Very thin TVs can include SD much more easily and the format is read-write so you immediately get free PVR.

I don't know why the distributors and TV manufacturers don't just step up and do something collectively instead of waiting on the likes of Sony, Toshiba etc to dictate the terms. It's their content so they should have more say.
post #92 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by dfiler View Post

I see the inclusion of an SD slot as more of a "why not" feature rather than an indication of "something big on the horizon".

I guess it depends upon what you mean by Big. Apple didn't do this for the he'll of it that is for sure.
Quote:

This isn't like adding a physical drive such as a magnetic or optical drive. SD support is comprised of a few copper contacts and a chip that probably costs less than a dollar. It takes up so little space and costs so little that the inclusion isn't comparable to the dilemma of whether to include a full blown drive with moving parts etc.

Yeah SD is designed to be cheap but you don't through it into a machine for no reason. As for space on a laptop there is no free lunch. The hardware takes up space. Realtively little for what you get in return but space none the less.
Quote:

Put another way, freeing laptop users from needing to carry around extra equipment is sufficient justification for an SD slot. Software distribution, even if a wise choice, isn't necessary to justify the SD slot.

That would be true if SD was universal but it isn't. In my case I still need a compact flash port.
As to software distribution CDs are certainly cheap if the machine being targetted has a drive. The question is how do you distribute to machines with no drives. With all the tablet rumors and other talk flowing around I really think that Apple has a bigger plan.


Dave
post #93 of 101
Tablet rumors have been around for well over a decade. Granted, with the iPhone GUI, we're closer than ever. But for the sake of discussion, I'll flesh out that scenario...

It seems clear how apple would provide software for their mythical tablet, the AppStore. The existence of the appstore seems like much better evidence for the method of software distribution than the inclusion of an SD card slot on laptops. The appstore not only already exists, it has been astoundingly popular. It is even heralded as redefining the nature of software distribution. Millions upon millions of people now expect to have all software available immediately at their fingertips. If apple is to redefine how software is distributed... oh wait, they already have.

Edit: Just imagine if the iPhone had gone the SD card route for software distribution...
post #94 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by dfiler View Post

The existence of the appstore seems like much better evidence for the method of software distribution than the inclusion of an SD card slot on laptops.

There can't be just one method that covers all scenarios. Final Cut Studio is 32GB in size. The Adobe CS Suite is more manageable at 6GB or so but still a hefty download and Snow Leopard is around the same.

Imagine that you distribute these packages to 1 million customers. 32,000 TB of bandwidth just for Final Cut distribution is quite a lot.

There are also specialist apps that people don't want as online distributions as they can be more easily pirated that way.

I think the App Store is a bad example as it's not popular because it's a good way to distribute software but because it's the only way to get software for an iphone and ipod touch, which are themselves popular devices.

If the App Store was exclusive to say the Apple TV, it would not have been nearly so successful.

People are getting tired of Apple's strict control over apps and the navigation in the App Store via itunes is terrible. The quality of the apps on offer is also very poor and it's hard to see which apps are good or bad before buying.

Networks will get faster over time and downloading will be the most popular distribution format but there will always be times when there are network outages and you need to get content onto a device. Media much more than software but I hope that SD becomes a strong alternative distribution format alongside optical, eventually displacing it.
post #95 of 101
Interesting discussion from a throw-away comment, bottom line is:

Apple innovates where others fear to tread.

Putting an SD slot in new machines makes sense if you want to provide bootable media without the overhead of a physical optical drive.

Apple's creativity in enabling target disk mode in Firewire, over the wireless optical sharing for an Air - they are a couple of examples of forward thinking - a better solution might be - make it possible to build an SL bootable disk on an SD card provided by the user, distribute on optical pro tem.

Other posts confirm this 'radical' approach, Apple machines are easier to support owing to creative thinking, lets have fun speculating and see what Q1 brings - might even see an SD slot in gen 3 iPod touch....
post #96 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by cubefan View Post

Interesting discussion from a throw-away comment, bottom line is:

Apple innovates where others fear to tread.

Putting an SD slot in new machines makes sense if you want to provide bootable media without the overhead of a physical optical drive.

It's not innovation if others have been doing it for years
post #97 of 101
Interesting... this thread is strikingly similar to those discussing DVD+blu-ray vs downloads/streaming. Basically, will a new physical distribution standard become commonplace or will network based distribution take hold first?
post #98 of 101
I have a feeling that Snow Leopard will be offered in DVD format and on (read-only) SDHC Card. There will probably be no price difference.
post #99 of 101
Quote:
Originally Posted by tilt View Post

These will become the new AOL floppies and AOL CDs

Although nowhere near as good as coasters.
post #100 of 101
Thread Starter 
Was close.....
post #101 of 101
I'm wondering if at one time the intention was to go SD but then they realized that some machines won't have room for it? Going USB stick isn't much worst than SD and is applicable to all Apple machines. Plus it is easier for the hackintosh crowd.

The nice thing about the stick approach is that you get just about everything on one device. That is both iLife and the OS. I'm wondering a bit if they jammed the developer tools in there also? Maybe a proud new AIR user can chime in.

As a side note what ever happened with Disney? Have the started movie distribution this way? Frankly I don't have much reason to go to a Disney store so I really don't know. For consummers movies on SD cards would be a mixed blessing. Volume wise it is a win, however when you loose the little guys it isn't so much of a win. For some body traveling with a Mac Book AIR I'd have to say it is a win as playing a movie from SD would take only marginally more power.

Dave
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