New devices – a focus on the interactive screen

issue 18 premThe digital radio industry has seen the introduction of many new innovative devices that support the DAB family of standards throughout 2011. New styles and designs of kitchen radios, dongles for your iphone, USBs for your PC, mobile phone headsets, and tablets now enable the consumer to access radio where ever and whenever they desire. What has been noticeable is not only the varying price range, of the new products from the very affordable to the high end receivers but also the increasing attention given to the interactive screen.

Today the interactive screen has become a part of daily life for millions. This has resulted in the whole value chain of digital radio increasingly focusing their attention on ensuring the consumer is provided with both what they want and expect and to bring radio into the modern digital age, enabling it to better compete with other forms of entertainment.

Chip-manufacturers such as Intel are working on increasing penetration of DAB/ DAB+/DMB chips in more devices from the standard kitchen radio to mobiles and tablets. As a consequence receiver manufacturers are now focusing on bringing digital radio to the consumer in a more engaging manner through the interactive screen and in turn the broadcasters are making use of the extra functionality that is offered by the DAB standards.

Previously radio was very much a passive, non visual form of entertainment, with few ways to engage the listener other than to encourage them to ring or text the show. Now the new interactive screen embedded within a growing number of new digital radio compatible devices enables slide show functionality that can be used to display EPG, album cover artwork, weather, stocks and shares, breaking news headlines, and traffic and travel data.

Connected Devices
The reason why digital radio proponents are so enthusiastic about the combination of the interactive screen and DAB/DAB+/ DMB is the ability to create internet connected devices. This enables broadcasters to not only air content efficiently but the connected device also enables the consumer to actively engage with the presenter through instantaneous interaction via chat on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter and online screen voting.

WorldDMB Project Office


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WorldDAB is the global forum for digital radio, facilitating the adoption and implementation of digital broadcast radio based on DAB, DAB+. Its membership includes public and commercial broadcasters, network providers, receiver, chip and car manufacturers.

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