Discs are cheaper. Dual layer Bluray discs? No. Formerly they were. But now a cartridge with the same storage capacity custom made is actually likely cheaper. Micro SD cards, their manufacturing cost not retail price, is far less than people would expect. 32GB costs $1 per card to make. 64GB maybe $1.25 per card. A single Dual layer disc costs $2.00. So a 64GB card costs less than a 50GB dual-layer Blu-ray disc. So, Nintendo Switch is on the right track.
Nintendo Switch shows why cartridges are better than discs
A cartridge is also now much more dependable because of its sturdy design and repairability. BlueRay discs, not so much which is why they don’t actually hold the real game on the disc. That and the fact there are games larger than 50GB. With a cartridge, Nintendo can vary the size of cartridges. And actually encourage developers to target smaller install sizes to save money. If a dev really needed a bigger cartridge like say 126GB, no idea why they would, the price would go up another 50 cents.
Now we know you also have to factor in this in a custom cartridge, not just a standard micro SD. But the manufacturer says they cut a deal to make the cartridges very affordable. At the most we see them charging $1.50 for a custom cartridge so it’s still cheaper.
If we are talking a skid the same size of Blu-ray dual layer discs vs cartridges of this size, even custom ones, the cartridges would cost roughly 10% cheaper. And there would be more of them on a single skid vs discs because they take up less real estate. We have seen the hard numbers first hand. Cartridges weren’t cheaper until just a few years ago.
Source: Venture Beat