Monday, January 08, 2007

Forbes On HD Radio

The Other Satellite Radio
Lou Hau, Forbes, 01.08.07, 6:45 PM ET
XM Satellite Radio and Sirius Satellite Radio don't have much in the way of groundbreaking radio receivers or doodads to boast about at this year's CES. In fact, XM is displaying an experimental automotive video receiver for the third year in a row. (The device is still too pricey and too much of a bandwidth hog to be launched commercially.)
To see some products that could affect the future of both XM and Sirius, you only have to walk a few feet from XM's location in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center. There you'll find an array of table-top radios, stereo component receivers and car stereos that license technology from iBiquity Digital, the Columbia, Md., company that developed the technology for HD Radio, the digital radio standard approved by the Federal Communications Commission in 2002.
There are now about 1,200 U.S. radio stations transmitting HD Radio broadcasts, about double the number a year ago, according to iBiquity President and Chief Executive Robert Struble.

Ever since the first HD Radio receivers hit the market in 2004, their steep price tag--more than $1,000 for a radio, anyone?--scared off all but the most dedicated first adopters. But prices have finally tumbled to the point that they're coming within range of the average consumer.
IBiquity's display includes a no-frills Radio Shack table-top receiver that retails for about $175. There's also a Sangean home stereo receiver that sells for as little as $199 at some retail outlets. Among the car stereos on display is a $199 in-dash car stereo sold by JVC, as well as an after-market receiver that can transmit HD programming through an existing AM/FM radio. In the everything-but-the-kitchen sink category is a $599 Polk Audio clock radio that can receive AM, FM, HD Radio and XM broadcasts, play CDs and can connect to a TV set to play DVDs...read more: here

1/08/2007 08:34:00 PM

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