Flexplay (2003 – 2009)

Flexplay (also known as ez-D) was an optical disc format for video, and was DVD-compatible, the main difference being a mechanism to make the disc unplayable after a certain length of time. The format was intended as a means for rental of new films, without the need for returning discs after use.

Discs are supplied in a vacuum-sealed package and after opening the bonding resin holding the inner and outer layers together reacts to oxygen and turns from clear to black in about 48 hours. Other than the bonding resin, Flexplay discs are the same as dual-layer DVD-9 discs but do not carry the DVD logo.

Test marketing of Flexplay discs began in 2003, and the first national release for a film in the US was 2004. Discs began to be sold in Japan under the tradmark 48dvd in 2005. In June 2008, Flexplay was relauched and it was announced that Staples would be selling Flexplay discs. However, a few months later, Staples cleared out its remaining stock.

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