CES 2009: HD Radio Makes a Worldwide Stand
More than a dozen countries throughout the world are expressing interest in adopting the HD Radio platform because of the technology’s ability to deliver digital-quality sound and services while leveraging existing analog spectrum. Interest is so high that leading broadcasters have created the Brazilian HD Radio Alliance.
Thirty stations currently broadcast in several major Brazilian cities as that nation considers formal national adoption. Across Europe broadcasters have tested and are continuing to test the technology. In September 2007, European broadcasters banded together to form the European HD Radio Alliance with the mission of encouraging adoption of the technology there.
Today, HD Radio broadcasting offers listeners of AM and FM radio the quality, choice and interactive services that consumers have come to expect from digital technologies, including:
§ iTunes® Tagging, a feature that enables consumers using HD Radio receivers equipped with a special “tag” button to capture and store artist and song information heard on HD Radio stations for download and purchase via iTunes.
§ HD2 and HD3 multicast channels, which dramatically expand the amount and diversity of radio content by allowing multiple channels of programming to be broadcast over a single FM station.
§ Static-free, crystal-clear reception on both AM and FM: CD-quality sound on FM; FM-stereo quality sound on AM.
§ Data services, such as text information, e.g., artist names and song titles.
In addition to the exciting HD Radio features available today, there are scores of new advanced features that are made possible by this technology, including:
§ Real-time traffic reports, broadcast by local stations and displayed on vehicle navigation systems.
§ Conditional Access, which would allow listeners to gain access to specialty content and programming.
§ Store-and-Replay, rewind a song that was just played or record an entire program to listen to at a more convenient time.
§ On-Demand Capabilities, instant access to news and information. The frustration of waiting for “Weather on the 8’s” would be a distant memory.
§ Surround Sound, premium sound experience in the car as well as home.