Disney to slip DVDs a Mickey

That is the warning Walt Disney will issue this August when it begins to "rent" DVDs that are set to become unplayable after two days and that therefore do not have to be returned.

Disney home video unit Buena Vista Home Entertainment will launch a pilot movie "rental" program in August that uses self-destruction technology, the company said Friday.

The discs stop working when a process similar to rusting makes them unreadable. The discs start off red, but when they are taken out of the package, exposure to oxygen eventually turns the coating black and makes it impenetrable by a DVD laser.

Buena Vista hopes the technology will let it crack a wider rental market, since it can sell the DVDs in stores, or almost anywhere, without setting up a system to get the discs back.

The discs work perfectly for the two-day viewing window, said Flexplay Technologies, the private company that developed the technology using material from General Electric.

The technology cannot be hacked by programmers who would want to view the disc longer, because the mechanism that closes the viewing window is chemical and has nothing to do with computer technology.

News source: CNet News.com

View: FlexPlay introduces the 'EZ-D', The 48 Hour DVD

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