Philips and Sony have created a license program for a new type of optical disc, under a new license agreement, called “Non-Standard Multi-Session CD-Audio Disc Patent License Agreement”.
An increasing number of audio CDs are being published as multi-session discs.
The first session of these discs contains audio that can be played back by a consumer CD-Audio player and the second session contains music, video, and/or other data that can be played back by the CD-ROM drive of a PC.
The manufacture of these multi-session discs is not licensed by Philips and Sony under the CD Disc Patent License Agreement. The multi-session discs, however, necessarily use a number of Philips and Sony patents on the multi-session and CD-ROM technologies. The expiration of these patents is still many years away, contrary to the patents on CD-Audio which have expired in many countries. Philips and Sony have created a license program for these new disc types, under a new license agreement, called “Patent License Agreement for the Manufacture of Non-Standard Multi-Session CD-Audio Discs”.
Not a CD-Extra disc
These new types of multi-session discs differ significantly from the CD discs for which Philips and Sony offer patent licenses (e.g. CD-Audio, CD-ROM, and CD-Extra).
The CD Disc Patent License Agreement comprising the essential patents of Philips and Sony defines a.o. the CD-Extra disc, which is also a multi-session disc. The new types of multi-session discs, however, do not conform to the mandatory features of the CD Extra standard as defined in the “Enhanced Music CD Standard Specifications”, such as the mandatory presence of certain directories and files. Hence, these new discs cannot be called CD-Extra discs.
More information about the new licensing program can be found here