Tuesday, 18 October 2011
Digital Radio - coming to a car near you
If it can't already, your car will soon be able to receive digital radio. Which means, you'll be able to listen to digital radio in your car - hurray!
This statement might not be as daft as it sounds - as it comes with an interesting conundrum for the providers of digital radio, the automotive industry and anywhere up to 25 million motorists.
The majority of cars on the road when the government switches off the analogue signal will not be set up to receive a digital signal, so we need a plan - or they won't be listening to anything..
Enter Digital Radio UK, a mix of automotive types and some electrical wizardry and we are looking at black box technology that can be fitted discreetly within the car to receive the signal and then transmit it through the cars original, analogue equipment - bingo.
I was at a DRUK conference today at the BBC and joined a discussion panel around getting this whole conversion process happening. It's quite a challenge.
One thing is clear, the potential of 25 million consumer transactions is a massive opportunity for the industry to engage with consumers. And, we also know that opportunities like this need to come with some consideration given to consumer information and protection.
The competitive arena created around digital radio will be lively, quite right too. What the industry and broader stakeholder group will need to ensure is that consumers know who is selling appropriate products and able to fit them competently. The industry and stakeholder group will also need to provide consumers with consistent information and support, along with advice and dispute resolution services should they encounter any concerns along the way.
I'm looking forward to getting involved!
Check out the current digital radio coverage in your area, it's probably better than you think http://www.ukdigitalradio.com/
All the best