Minister Told To Quit Blame Game And Roll Out A Digital Radio Plan

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One of the worlds’ leading experts on digital radio and DAB+ has said that Australia is a better position to take advantage of the benefits of digital radio technology than the UK because we rely less on Government sponsored broadcasts. He also called on the Federal Government to quite the blame game and roll out a plan and funding for Digital Radio.

One of the worlds’ leading experts on digital radio and DAB+ has said that Australia is a better position to take advantage of the benefits of digital radio technology than the UK because we rely less on Government sponsored broadcasts. He also praised the effort that commercial radio was putting into the technology.

Anthony Sethhill, is the CEO of Frontier Silicon a UK technology Company that supplies 80% of the processor in DAB digital radios. He was in Australia to attend the recent Australian Communications and Media Authority conference on the management of the radiofrequency spectrum.

During his visit here has also called on the Federal Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy to fund immediately the role out of digital radio for organisations like the ABC. He has also said that the government should stop engaging in the blame game and set out a framework and funding for digital radio in the same way that they have done for HD TV.

“For digital radio and DAB + to be successful in Australia at least 80% of the population have got to be able to access the new digital service. The government has to take action immediately to implement a framework for this to happen” he said.
He added “In a question to your Communications Minister I asked him what he was going to do for digital radio because all he is doing right now is blaming the previous government for lack of a plan when it appears that he also lacks a plan. What they need to do is set a plan, work out how the plan will be funded, test it and then set a date to switch off analogue radio in Australia in the same way that they plan to switch off HD TV in 2013”.

 

When questioned why digital radio appeared to be having problems in the UK he said ” In the UK we lack good listening data for advertisers because 80% of consumers listen to government radio in the form of the BBC and they don’t carry advertising. In Australia the situation is different 80% of the available audience listen to commercial radio and they have good information about their listeners. In the UK right now there is better information about Internet readership than who is listening to commercial radio as a result advertisers are investing in the Internet”.

He added “DAB radio has been very successful in the UK there are more than 7,000,000 units out there and consumers love it. It delivers better quality sound and information about music being played. In Australia commercial radio is better structured than the UK and I believe that Australians who are renown for being early adopters of technology will take to DAB+ when it is rolled out later this year”.

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