DRM; Or How To Make 30,000-Hour LED Bulbs ‘Last’ Only One Month

Want to artificially decrease the lifespan of your product in order to keep your revenue stream intact? DRM’s got your back, yo. It never asks, “Why?” It only asks, “Why not?”

Run out of refills on Proprietary Cat Waste Cleaning Product™ and a $200 luxury litter box becomes indiscernible from its $10 counterpart. Like generating a tremendous amount of waste along with your single cup of coffee? Hey, great, but your k-cup refill better be on brand or your expensive coffee maker will be about as active as the one you picked up from a garage sale for $2. Or less so, considering the second-hand one at least generated a funky burning smell before shorting out the kitchen wiring.

But this one tops both of those in what the installed DRM does to artificially shorten the lifespan of the product. (h/t Techdirt reader Kaden)

The IlluMask is a $30 “light therapy” mask that utilizes LED lights to zap away bacteria, stimulate skin cells and otherwise fight acne/aging (depending on what model you purchase.) Sounds great (if you buy IlluMask’s claims). A lifetime of skin revitalization, and all for just $30. Oh, wait.

The trouble is, it is limited to 30 daily uses of 15 minutes each, totaling just 7 1/2 hours, effectively lasting you a month. At the end of which, you just discard the device and get a new one. That seems like a ridiculous waste of a perfectly fine, functional device whose LED’s can last at least 30,000 to 40,000 hours.

Even if we ignore the negative environmental impact of discarding plastic masks loaded with perfectly good LEDs, there’s still the incredible audacity of IlluMask’s claim that its mask will only last 30 days, at which point the LEDs doing all of the facial revitalization/bacteria zapping are suddenly useless, even with well over 99.97% of their lifespan still ahead of them (based on 35,000 hours).

Link (Techdirt)

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