Apple is extending the DVD formats it supports, introducing limited support for DVD+R and DVD+RW in Panther (Mac OS X 10.3).

Initially, the support extends only to backing-up data. Support has not yet been integrated into the company's iLife applications, including iDVD and iTunes, Cnet reports.

The two standards – "-" and "+" – are formats used for recording DVDs for playback on computers and DVD players, but DVD+RW drives cannot write to DVD-R or DVD-RW media, and vice versa.

Apple has only supported the "-" standard until now, and told Cnet the move was a response to customer demand.

SuperDrive supplier Pioneer announced it would support both formats in May, marking a sea-change in the long-running format war.

The DVD+RW format was initially backed by computer manufacturers, while consumer-electronic manufacturers favoured the competing DVD-RW format, which Apple also chose to support. Both Sony and HP/Compaq now support DVD+RW.