Disney Touts a Way to Ditch the DVD

Walt Disney Co. (DIS) is close to unveiling technology that it says will enable entertainment companies to adapt their business models to a new reality in which consumers increasingly rely on computers and cell phones in place of DVD players and TVs.

The technology, code-named Keychest, could contribute to a shift in what it means for a consumer to own a movie or a TV show, by redefining ownership as access rights, not physical possession.

The technology would allow consumers to pay a single price for permanent access to a movie or TV show across multiple digital platforms and devices–from the Web, to mobile gadgets like iPhones and cable services that allow on-demand viewing. It could also facilitate other services such as online movie subscriptions.

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