Apple Says Optical Drives Were Holding It Back

Apple's senior VP of global marketing, Phil Schiller, has explained the firm's reasons for removing the optical drive from its new iMac system.

As it has done with the MacBook Air and the new Retina Display MacBook Pro, Apple also decided to drop the optical drive in its new 5mm-thin iMacs. According to Schiller, older technologies such as disc drives are holding the industry back and have ultimately done their time. He also noted that competitors are afraid to lose optical drives.

"These old technologies are holding us back. They're anchors on where we want to go," he said. "We find the things that have outlived their useful purpose. Our competitors are afraid to remove them. We try to find better solutions - our customers have given us a lot of trust. In general, it's a good idea to remove these rotating medias from our computers and other devices. They have inherent issues — they're mechanical and sometimes break, they use power and are large. We can create products that are smaller, lighter and consume less power."

Schiller also stated that consumers have stopped asking Apple about Blu-ray. Having never integrated the technology into its products, he said: "Blu-ray has come with issues unrelated to the actual quality of the movie that make [it] a complex and not-great technology…So for a whole plethora of reasons, it makes a lot of sense to get rid of optical discs in desktops and notebooks."

The Apple executive also said, naturally, that it's better to buy movies through iTunes, subsequently having them available to watch on all of a user's Apple devices.

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  • hoofhearted
    Not an Apple fan, but have to agree. More room for an extra HD in laptops, plus like the 3.5 floppy, much better served as an extra USB carry device for when the need arises.
  • wemakeourfuture
    Need my optical. No better way to share large amounts of pictures and home videos with other family and friends.

    Plus, my DVD / Blu-Ray provides great archiving, have had way too many backup harddrives fail on me to trust them without some form of redundancy.
  • nieur
    apple is holding industry back
  • rdc85
    "Blu-ray has come with issues unrelated to the actual quality of the movie that make a complex and not-great technology…..."

    Hmm... okay

    "........ naturally, that it's better to buy movies through iTunes,........"

    now, i see where it's going...
  • Firion87
    I'm curious when will Apple remove definitely the user from their devices because they are not monkey enough for them.
  • cats_Paw
    There is just one small problem with that. Apple is again imposing their view over the consumers freedom of choice. Thou i have to admit that the general population is far less informed, and buy what is told to.
    Just one small issue: Compatibility... but then again Apple is bearly compatible with anything but apple products.
  • g00fysmiley
    translation ... we want you to only be able to buy and use software through i tunes no more buying a cd or any media to play in your device that was not purchased through itunes... greddy wankers
  • spentshells
    The only thing disc drives hold back is the ability to monitor what the user moves from computer to computer. Everyone hold onto your burners because when the internet gets busted for sharing data everything goes right back to tape trading like the 90's until we build our own private internets
  • cats_Paw
    Oh and one more thing, and this is crucial: Cd-DVD is a great back-up way for games (the original cd-dvd is actually a backup), but if you have all on DRM and online only like Steam or Origin, Basicly you no longer own anything you buy, since at any time they can turn your right to use the software you bought (Dont belive it? Read the terms of agreement for once in your life, and see how hard you are getting F in the...).

    In ohter word, Apple is giving me even more reasons not to buy their products.
  • waxdart
    The user lost out when blu-ray won over HD-DVD that's for sure. So long as you can get an external device I see no reason why you would want the bulk of the drive in the laptop; but when you have a full tower fill it up with as much kit as you need. All part of the fun.