Auto Electronics

HD offers alternative to satellite radio

Fear of satellite radio is prompting an unprecedented level of cooperation among broadcasters in their efforts to launch HD Radio and HD2, also known as multicasting or supplemental audio channel broadcasting, according to Frank Viquez, director of ABI Research's transportation practice. Viquez said satellite radio has gained more than nine million subscribers in the past four years “and is now putting a crunch on the traditional broadcasting market.”

HD Radio multicasting offers the ability to divide radio signals into separate audio channels, allowing new programming opportunities. "While specific revenue and business models have yet to be defined, the broadcast content on HD2 will vary from station to station and by market,” Viquez noted. “However, we can easily imagine broadcasters offering specialized channels that feature little or no commercial interruption, 'pay-per-listen' events such as concerts or other special events, or new formats that target a very specific demographic audience."

ABI Research's study, "Digital Radio Automotive Markets: Global Trends and Strategies for DAB/DRM, HD Radio, DMB and Satellite Radio" outlines current and planned initiatives for both satellite and terrestrial-based radio and multimedia services for each major region, and explains how they pertain to automotive markets.

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