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DataPlay Is On The Way

Techstination feature for Thursday, July 12, 2001

A little disc called the DataPlay is on the way. Bloomberg Bootcamp, a report on today's technology. When it comes to a cheap way to hold large amounts of data... .it's hard to beat CD-R technology. But those blank CD discs are too big to fit in portable devices like PDAs or digital cameras. That's why there's a lot of excitement about a new kind of storage called DataPlay...

"DataPlay is about the size of a quarter and it's an optical storage recording piece of media that can hold up to five hundred megabytes of storage on it. Very small, optical format."

Kent Schoenherr of Imation, which will be manufacturing the first DataPlay discs in the U.S.. The discs, which like CD-R media are not re-writable will sell for between five and twelve dollars. The target launch date is October 30th. The hope is to attract recording companies to the format with pre-recorded content...

"One of the things that's unique about DataPlay is a technology called content key. And what that allows the record companies to do is they can put music on here and if the artist wants to put more than the selection that's available, they can put one, two or three albums worth of music on a DataPlay disc. The consumer buys the first one and if they really like the artist, all they need to do is to download content key for it, not the whole song, and that will allow them to unlock other content that's available on the DataPlay disc."

Winning acceptance for a new format isn't easy. Just ask Sony... which has had limited success with its MiniDisc format for years. Bloomberg Bootcamp, I'm Fred Fishkin.