In March, 1987, the Rotary Head Digital Audio Tape (R-DAT) format was introduced in Japan. This introduction signified the possibility that the compact cassette and compact disc (CD) formats will be displaced in automotive sound systems.
Automotive CD players are gaining popularity as the first generation digital audio sound source in the vehicle. The R-DAT format, having smaller size, longer playing time and home recording capability, has significant advantages over the CD.
General applications of DAT to automotive audio systems will follow its movement into consumer home and portable markets. This report is an update on the issues of technology, market development and legislation that affects the acceptance of DAT.