updated 02:05 pm EDT, Fri April 18, 2008
Europe's erasing DVD-Ds
Four European countries are offering DVD movies on a format called DVD-D that is unique in that the content is erased 8 hours after the disposable disc makes its first rotation in a player. The format is also applied to software, with a 48-hour life span, either of which can be kept indefinitely until its first use, at which point the timer starts. Such DVD-Ds are available in Italy, France, Germany and Scandinavia at bookstores, gas stations and kiosks for about a third of the price of a traditional multi-play DVD.
After the 48 hours are up, inserting the disc into a DVD player will result in a No Disc message. Recordable DVD-D discs are also available, with a 4.5GB capacity. The blank DVD-D+R can be recorded at up to 8X speed, and can either be ordered with pre-recorded content in quantities less than 2,000, or bought as blanks. The client can then specify how long the data is to remain, having the option of one-time viewing only, or a time period of 8 hours, 48 hours or otherwise. Blank DVD-D+Rs available for purchase can be recorded with a 48-hour data life.
There is certainly potential for companies to distribute demo programs or software on DVD-D discs, provided of course the discs can be copy protected first, as it's not clear what, if anything, prevents users from copying the DVD-D's content before the data self-erases. The discs and packages are fully recyclable. [via Heise]