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Music Industry: History of Storage Devices Report

The music industry is active and popular all over the world today. People listen avidly to music while at home while traveling, while working, and while spending time with friends. They have ample opportunity to enjoy a variety of musical compositions, regardless of location, thanks to diverse technological developments that never cease to impress the general public, with new advanced features to make music sound better.

Today, it is common to have an iPod or to listen to the radio or stored songs with the help of a smartphone; however, these benefits were a long time in development. The ability to store music for easy personal access is now considered typical, and people do not even realize how many advantages they have: music can be accessed whenever and wherever a person is so that there is no need to wait for a live performance. Moreover, music storage devices allow users to listen to their favorite pieces across many different personal devices.

It all began with the invention of the phonograph cylinder and the record at the end of the nineteenth century. With that new technology, it became possible to store a limited amount of music to be played at chosen times, but the playback was of course a poor sound quality (Albright, 2015). A revolution came with the creation of the cassette, the great 1963 innovation that gave the general public the chance to choose whether they wanted to listen to loud music in social settings or to have the music in their pockets. The cassette impressed the market and attracted attention since it was a music and data storage device which allowed listening on the go.

A cassette player worked with magnetic tape. When rubbed, it created frequency waves that in turn produced musical sound. However, constant use increased the possibility of quickly ruining the tape so that eventually the cassette was worn out. The floppy disk appeared as a smart substitution for the cassette tape. Technology experts created this new device so that the general public could listen to music with the aid of computers, which people far and wide had begun to use by then.

In 1972, the discs allowed the storage of various data, including musical compositions, but the discs were limited in storage size. Unlike cassettes, discs lasted longer but still were based on the magnetic medium. A drive rotated the disc via a motor, which allowed music to be played on the computer.

As technology developed, many things became digital. People began to use video game consoles and computers daily, which contributed to the idea of bringing music to a similar level. This led to the kind of data that users could share by creating a CD, which entered the market in 1981. The CD impressed the public with a longer use time and its storage size. These discs lasted longer, which was another huge advantage. Besides, the CD could store different types of data that were compatible with computers’ advanced features: in fact, it used the binary code, and the computer’s disc player had a converter, which turned it into music. Still, at the time of its entrance into the market, the CD was expensive and not everyone could afford it.

Via an increased desire to add to potential storage sizes, professionals then came up with DVD technology, which could be used with special DVD players or with computer drives. DVDs came in many different types so that a user could select the one that they most needed. These special devices needed to allow the representatives of the general public not only to listen to music they liked but also to watch related videos due to its size. Also, audio quality improved significantly, which gave the public an even better sound. Still, in general, DVDs have much in common with CDs (Zetta, 2016).

Compact Flash appeared next in 1994. It was used as a mass storage device so that users had the opportunity to store any data they wanted, even if it had different formats. It turned out to be a successful device that appealed to professionals. Compact Flash brought with it comparable storage but beat its competition due to its small size and more affordable price. It also allowed users to walk around with about 500GB in their pockets, which meant that a person could store many musical tracks. Its data transfer rate was based on the same system used for CDs.

The urge to make it more efficient to listen to music on the go, but with the specific use of advanced technologies instead of outdated cassettes, led to the creation of the mp3 player. This device allowed the user to put various compositions directly onto a device, as it had its internal storage. That eliminated the need to buy and bring additional devices. Even though initially, in 1994, it had limited space, the mp3 player could work for a long time (Diaz, 2016). Moreover, it could be kept at full charge so that there was no separate need to spend any additional money on batteries.

At the start of the twenty-first century, the public began using U Discs and USB flash drives. U Discs made it possible to store and retrieve data of various formats rather quickly so that there was no need to spend much time uploading musical compositions. It is a hard drive, which can store ample data, which reduces the need to carry several devices or delete previously stored pieces to make more room. The USB is an even faster device, but in general, it has much in common with U Discs (Catherine, 2015).

Professionals of the twenty-first century did not stop with these achievements, focusing instead on the possibility of providing even more advanced features. Apple created a new device for music listeners via the iPod, which appealed to users with its many innovative features, and the fact that it was produced by a well-known company. Two years after its 2001 inception, this device received its music store, in which users can store pieces they purchased. The iPod works via an internet connection and the device can be charged as needed. It allows users to download about 10GB of music.

The long and storied history of music storage devices began long ago and the trends continue thanks to active professionals who strive to provide users with more advanced features. People have already moved on past some of these devices, preferring iPods, U Discs, and USBs when they want to store music since the process is much more efficient and certainly simpler.


Albright, D. (2015). . Web.

Catherine. (2015). . Web.

Diaz, M. (2016). . Web.

Zetta. (2016). History of data storage technology. Web.

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"Music Industry: History of Storage Devices." IvyPanda, 14 Oct. 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/music-industry-history-of-storage-devices/.

1. IvyPanda. "Music Industry: History of Storage Devices." October 14, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/music-industry-history-of-storage-devices/.


IvyPanda. "Music Industry: History of Storage Devices." October 14, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/music-industry-history-of-storage-devices/.


IvyPanda. 2020. "Music Industry: History of Storage Devices." October 14, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/music-industry-history-of-storage-devices/.


IvyPanda. (2020) 'Music Industry: History of Storage Devices'. 14 October.

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