How best to describe a DVD? Well:
A DVD is a silver spinning thing that takes up too much space for what it does.
It’s damaged far too easily – even the lightest touch marking it permanently with a fingerprint or scratch.
And then there’s the packaging. A plastic case that’s too big for the overcrowded office and home of 2012.
With the production of DVD discs surpassing the production of Blu-ray discs in 2011, this format was not the game-changer that was predicted.
A higher quality than DVD yes – depending on what film you are watching.
But the only real difference between the two formats is that blue ray can store more data.
Take that away and you are left with the flimsy plastic coaster substitute that you began with.
Technically speaking, web video is nothing new.
Digitally streamed video content has been available to consumers since 1997, with WMV and AVI being the two dominant formats.
The replacement of DVD by web video is something that has been long awaited by both producers and consumers.
This transition is slowly taking place.
Web streaming and the future of video
In 2003, the MP4 codec was released for general use.
The MP4 codec has many advantages over both WMV/AVI streaming media and physical DVD storage.
When comparing it to the traditionally used streams:
> It is of a higher quality, despite similar data size.
> Most media players support MP4, whereas some media players do not accept other media files without conversion.
An example of this is Apple’s QuickTime not being able to play WMV files. The file has to be converted beforehand.
In comparison to DVD:
> It is not entirely reliant on a physical disc.
> It is easily transferable.
Whether it be on a hard drive, an SD card or a USB stick.
Or, of course, as a stream.
But why stream when there are other storage options?
Storing a video can be inconvenient at the best of times.
Even when using a large hard drive allocated space becomes an issue, making it unlikely that your entire DVD collection will fit onto one PC.
A USB stick may be solid and manoeuvrable, but you will need an 8GB one for every HD film.
The desk has just been cleared of the clutter of DVD disks – now your replacing it with USB sticks?
And then there’s the SD card
In just about every gadget you own, be it the Wii, the camcorder or the smart-phone, there will be a slot for this device.
It is becoming universal.
But, like the USB stick, a new SD card will be needed for every film.
And, like the DVD, it is easy to damage. It’s plastic after all.
“But its small! Its size makes it perfect!”
But be careful not to lose it – or you lose your video/
Web video does the job
Governments from all around the world are making massive investments in their telecommunications infrastructure.
Fibre optic broadband is making cinema and TV-on-demand a reality.
Most televisions already have IPTV (internet protocol television) applications like YouTube and BBC I Player built in.
This allows for total interactivity as opposed to the limited filtered interactivity you get from Sky+ and TiVo.
Sites like LoveFilm are, with the full support of the major film studios, streaming movies via the web to homes all around the world.
And, according to business insider, web video advertising is starting to overtake television advertising in terms of revenue.
The technology, infrastructure and capital for web video exists today
So, it appears, does its appeal.
DVD and Blu-Ray are big and fragile.
With the arrival of bigger bandwidth, web video has become the new reality.
Web video lives. DVD is dead.
To see a range of web video – check out this page