Seven of the largest US radio companies have formed the HD Digital Radio Alliance to promote and accelerate the rollout of high-definition digital radio.
The alliance is open to all US-based radio companies and its members so far include Bonneville, Citadel, Clear Channel, Emmis, Entercom, Greater Media and Infinity.
The group will coordinate the rollout of HD digital radio, including coordinating formats on new multicast channels known as HD2. It will also seek to secure distribution deals and jointly market HD digital radio in partnership with receiver manufacturers and retailers.
Member companies will also devote more than $200 million in commercial
inventory on their own stations in 2006 to promote HD digital radio and the
new HD2 multicast channels.
In addition to enhanced quality of sound, digital radio offers listeners broader choice and a wireless data feature that enables text information on songs to be broadcast directly to receiver display screens.
Radio broadcasters also have the benefit of segmenting a single, existing radio frequency so that it can carry multiple, simultaneous, higher-quality AM and FM broadcast streams as well as wireless data.
HD digital radio technology is already enjoying strong momentum, with close to 600 US radio stataions already broadcasting their primary programming signal in HD digital quality, and more than 15 manufacturers creating digital receivers.