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Optical disc drives aren't dead

Optical disc drives aren't dead


They just live in ugly Acer laptops now

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There's something about obviated technology that just makes it endearing to me. Take the once ubiquitous CD drive of laptops and desktops of yore (yore being roughly a decade ago). It has been all but deprecated out of existence by Apple's MacBook Air and the legion of PC clones that followed in its wake. Almost no one bothers trying to fit a big mechanical repository for optical media into modern laptops anymore — but business users apparently still value the option.

Acer's new business laptops for Computex are exactly the sort of forgettable, unappealing, black functionaries that you'd expect business PC buyers from 2004 to be interested in. Coming in 14- and 15.6-inch varieties, the Travelmate P2 has a "fine linen textile" pattern on the top and sides, a brushed metal look on the wrist rest, and perhaps the chunkiest bezels you'll find on any new device announced this year. I'd call its design apologetically plastic.

But the Travelmate P2 does allow you to spec it up with a DVD / CD-RW drive, and it has Nvidia GeForce GTX 940M graphics with outputs for up to three monitors, along with Skype for Business certification, Intel Skylake processor options, and up to 32GB of RAM. So, you know, it's not absolutely terrible — just terrible looking.

I'm not going to question business users who still cling on to their old CDs and DVDs, especially not in light of the Pentagon's admission that it relies on floppies for top-secret national security stuff. But, guys, can we not raise out aesthetic standards a little bit? Acer does make some very good looking laptops too!