HD Radio Gets Boost From FCC
It’s difficult to figure out who’s more excited about the recent Federal Communications Commission decision regarding HD Radio: the broadcasters or Sirius and XM. The ruling means virtually any radio station can provide HD Radio service if they want to, and a flexible bandwidth policy gives broadcasters multicasting and data casting rights. In addition, they can time-broker unused digital bandwidth to third parties, subject to certain regulatory requirements. Finally, HD Radio stations can now broadcast AM stations in the evening.
All of these allowances were restricted when the FCC authorized digital audio broadcasting (DAB) on an interim basis a few years ago. Since then, over 1,200 stations have begun, or started the process of, broadcasting in HD.
“NAB applauds Chairman Martin and his FCC colleagues for taking a significant step today in advancing the already budding HD Radio technology,” said NAB president and CEO David K. Rehr on the company’s Web site. “As HD Radio expands across America, we are hopeful the Commission recognizes the unique role played by local radio and the considerable public service contributions voluntarily made by stations within their communities.”