As Apple, Napster, RealNetworks, Sony and OD2 prepare to battle for Europe's digital music market, a report claims that music companies hope to impose further limits on CD burning.

Allegedly the industry is testing technology that will prevent consumers making copies of songs from CDs burned from legal digital downloads. They are considering tools that could limit the number of backups that can be made from ordinary CDs, and prevent copied or burned versions being used to make more copies, according to Cnet.

This report claims the labels are particularly interested in new solutions from SunnComm International and Macrovision. The report further adds that BMG is currently testing SunnComm's technology in the US.

"Record labels are seeking a way to let consumers make a limited number of copies of their music – enough for a car, a vacation home and a friend, for example – without allowing for uncontrolled duplication. Under the current system, each copied CD can itself lead to an unlimited number of additional copies, cutting substantially into sales, the report explains.

It also warns that labels may insist on digital services such as iTunes applying these technologies within their offerings at some future point.