Anti-theft DVDs ‘turn bad' two days after opening

31 July 2003 by
Anti-theft DVDs ‘turn bad' two days after opening

Help is at hand for those hotel businesses where guests rent DVDs from reception to play in their rooms and then "forget" to return the disc.

Buena Vista Home Entertainment, based in California, is to start trials of a DVD that self-destructs after a limited time once it has been used. In effect, the guest buys, rather than rents, a disposable film.

The new disc, developed by Flexplay Technologies of New York and called the EZ-D, works for 48 hours once it has been exposed to the air. When the time is up, DVD players can't read it.

It is thought that operators will sell the discs at the same price as it costs to rent a normal DVD.

The discs are supplied in an airtight packet. Initially the EZ-D is red, but with exposure to oxygen it gradually changes to black over 48 hours. When the disc has turned completely black it can no longer be read by a DVD player.

The EZ-D faces a challenge, however. A survey by 321 Studios, a DVD software company in Missouri, has shown that 76% of the 5,051 people surveyed would not buy the EZ-Ds, because they feel that the new technology implies they're dishonest.

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