The HD Radio Alliance

Hdradio_2Today in NYC, seven of the largest radio broadcasters announced the formation of the HD Radio Alliance.

According to Radio World, the HD Radio Alliance will be run by Peter Ferrara, formerly a VP at Clear Channel.

The Alliance’s major efforts will include "the coordination of formats on a new multicast
channel, as well as working to secure digital automotive receiver
designs and lower the price points of digital receivers."

Apparently this is a significant cooperative marketing and programming effort.  The prepared statement says that "Member companies will devote air time and dollars to promote HD
Radio and the new multicast channel."

I blogged last week that November was a great month for HD Radio.  Well this announcement means that December will be even better.

This announcement is important on multiple levels:

1 – it shows that the major broadcasters are united in their effort to make HD radio work and they now have a coordinating entity in place to do that.

2 – it shows that multicasting (new free stations) are going to be the lynchpin of their marketing efforts

3 – it shows that the broadcasters are going to spend a lot of on air promotion to drive adoption of HD radios and the new multicast stations that will only be available on HD.

4 – it shows that they are also going to work agressively to get the price of HD Radios down to a mass market price and that they are going to work to get the auto manufacturers to put HD radios in cars.

That’s a winning formula if you ask me.  It’s taken the radio industry a while to get behind HD, but 2006 may turn out to be the year that HD Radio finally becomes real.

#VC & Technology