At a late afternoon NARM session today (May 5), researchers from the NPD Group presented focus group feedback on ways to make the CD more appetizing to consumers. But the panel failed to address the larger issue: In an era where 80% of teens download music for free, is there any hope of getting them interested in purchasing discs again?

The presentation led audience members through reactions to several possible versions of “CD 2.0.” Russ Krupnick, the presenter, first laid out the things people like most about CDs: lyric sheets, bonus material, green packaging and special offers. He pointed out that most consumers still buy CDs, but are simply buying fewer of them than before.

The CDVU+, an enhanced disc with videos and other extras, topped the list of possible improvements to the current format. Two other solutions that allowed users to transfer content from a Web site were heralded as being good for certain niches, and digital album download cards were named as one way to revive flagging “music gifting” programs.

Finally, the USB drive was viewed by consumers to worth more money and to have a higher gifting potential, but was most popular among heavy music buyers.