Positive Signals for HD Radio

This article describes the current development of digital radio in the US. HD Radio does not stand for 'high definition' radio (although sound quality is a selling point): it is a brand name owned by iBiquity Digital Corp., and the only method approved by the Federal Communications Commission for broadcasting digital information on AM and FM frequencies.

Positive Signals for HD Radio

Chuck Kapelke

For the past year, more than 1,100 radio stations in 151 different markets have been heavily promoting their new “HD” transmissions. For that, listeners have the Digital Radio Alliance to thank. The consortium of broadcasters pumped $200 million into marketing the new digital technology on analog airwaves in 2006, with another $250 million to be invested this year.

Despite that whopping investment, it's a good bet that most radio listeners still think “HD” stands for “high definition.” It does not, though high-quality sound is one of the technology's major selling points. HD Radio...

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