With 2TB hard drives floating around, the once-impressive 50GB that a dual Blu-ray Disc can hold isn't so impressive anymore. To make things bigger, the Blu-ray Disc Association decided that it was time to add more layers and call the new standard BDXL – which is now finalized and official.
With the completion and approval of the specification, manufacturers can now obtain licensing information and license applications needed to begin production of the high capacity write-once and rewritable discs and hardware. Because the new media specifications are extensions of current Blu-ray Disc technologies, future BDXL capable recorders can easily be designed to play back existing 25GB and 50GB Blu-ray Disc formats, but current laser hardware aren't compatible with the newer media.
Targeted primarily at commercial segments such as broadcasting, medical and document imaging enterprises with significant archiving needs, BDXL provides customers with triple layer 100GB RE (rewritable) and R (write-once) discs and quadruple layer 128GB R discs. Possible consumer applications include capture and playback of HD broadcast and satellite programming in markets where set-top recorders are prevalent.
"The BDA worked diligently to create an extension of the Blu-ray Disc format that leverages the physical structure of the design of the disc to create even more storage capacity," said Victor Matsuda, Blu-ray Disc Association Global Promotions Committee chair. "By using the existing Blu-ray technologies, we have created a long-term and stable solution for archiving large amounts of sensitive data, video and graphic images. We expect further growth of the Blu-ray Disc market as the introduction of 100GB/128GB discs will expand the application of Blu-ray Disc technologies."