If you have ever researched the infancy of computers, you should know how storage devices evolved. The earliest ones were as big as cabinets, which is a stark contrast to what you have here in the present. You now have micro SD cards that fit on the tip of your finger, and they can carry hundreds of gigabytes. Imagine how many hours of video or music you can store in them. They make it possible for smartphones to be pocket-sized yet full-featured.
With the wealth of storage options that you have out there coupled with increasing Internet speeds, it puts into question the viability of keeping traditional forms of physical media. As of now, the music and video market are still dominated by CDs, DVDs, and Blu-ray discs, but digital streaming services have gained a lot of ground already. And this would beg the question: Do you stick with physical media or go fully digital?
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If you run a business and you find that the wealth of information that you have on your products and your customers are becoming too much to handle, you have to get a software solution to handle all of that. This would be something like ServiceNow’s service portfolio management application. This can help you manage and track the progress of your transactions and keep your information database updated. The approach would be similar when managing your media collection. You have to have the means to categorize, sort, and search for specific items. Of course, these features can be applied to either physical or digital libraries. Their methods of execution though, are vastly different from each other.
Music, movies, and video games are some of the most popular forms of entertainment around. There are many people who are such big fans that they collect all sorts of memorabilia related to their favorites. This is no surprise as they are also a huge part of pop culture. If you are one of those who have a huge extensive collection of CDs, vinyl, or any other form of physical media, keeping them neat and in order could prove to be a challenge. They can take up a lot of precious space on your shelves or closets, and managing them could involve creating labels or dedicating shelf space for specific categories. But there are people who love the adventure of hunting and shopping for the hard to find ones, and they display them proudly in for everyone to see.
On the other hand, for those who are more particular about the content they consume, they are fine with having digital versions. Media players and streaming platforms are more convenient when it comes to searching or accessing your collection.
Owners of physical media can rest easy — No one will take their stuff away from them. But there is a debate as to what degree of ownership one has when it comes to digital content. There are different answers to that, but it all boils down to who is hosting the content. That would be the companies that run the digital storefronts like Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store. You need to set proper expectations for yourself. Just know that you own the content for as long as the servers are up and the company who owns them is still in business. Beyond that, it is best for you to check the terms and conditions of the service.
As far as playing your physical or digital content, there are many devices out there to choose from. For video games, the PC front is mostly digital. Home consoles are still home to disc drives, so if you want to amass a physical collection this would be the place to be. There are still disc players out there that run DVDs and music CDs, but outside the home the smartphone is king. The latter’s Internet capability will also let you run your favorite streaming services, which is awesome for such a pocketable device. You can tell everyone that you have the largest library of songs and videos in the palm of your hand.
It is quite clear that physical media is more attractive to collectors, and those who prefer digital admire its convenience. Who will win out in the near future? That will depend on who gets the bigger audience. All signs point to digital leading the way. But for those who are fans of physical media, do not worry. Even if it becomes a niche, the number of people who love them is too significant to ignore.