Commercial Radio Australia is working with digital receiver manufacturers world-wide in a bid to ensure Australian radio listeners have an extensive range of digital receivers to choose from when the new DAB+ technology launches in May 2009.

Chief executive officer of Commercial Radio Australia (CRA), Joan Warner has recently returned from meetings with receiver manufacturers at a global DAB+ forum in Beijing and a digital radio summit in Tokyo attended by leading receiver manufacturers such as Sony, Panasonic and Pioneer, where she explained Australian digital radio would be launching with anything up to 30 channels per multiplex and extensive use of the new visual aspect of radio.

“Australian radio broadcasters going digital next year are planning to provide their listeners with a full range of digital services, including multi-media features from day one of the digital radio launch and we want listeners to have a great choice of well priced receivers to buy,” said Ms Warner.

To encourage receiver manufacturers to test and trial their products using DAB+, CRA has produced a comprehensive Ensemble Transport Interface (ETI) file that contains recorded material from the Australian digital radio trial that includes up to 32 channels, slide show images, Portable Network Graphic (PNG) logos and scrolling text.

This ETI file is being made available free of charge to receiver manufacturers all over the world to assist with the development of receivers that support the mix of audio and multimedia content that broadcasters will be likely to transmit when DAB+ digital radio launches in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth and Brisbane in May 2009.

In addition to the ETI file, CRA has also put together a DVD which demonstrates broadcaster commitment and retailer support for the Australian DAB+ launch. The DVD, targeting key receiver manufacturer decision makers is available in English, Japanese, Cantonese, Indonesian, Korean, Malay and Mandarin.

The DVD illustrates the progress of the digital radio rollout in Australia and highlights some of the radio industry’s plans for a comprehensive consumer marketing campaign.

“There are an estimated 50 million analogue radio receivers in Australia that we hope will be replaced over time by a new digital radio device. We want Australian listeners to tune in to the new free to air digital radio channels and ‘experience‘ the difference in the DAB+ digital technology,” said Ms Warner.

Receiver manufacturers are increasingly interested in supporting DAB+ as this is the standard already adopted in Australia, Switzerland, Malta and Hungary, to be launched in Germany and Italy in 2009 and likely to be the standard, in the Czech Republic, Malaysia China, much of Scandinavia and other European and Asian markets.

The following receiver manufacturers have formally advised that they will have DAB+ receivers available for Australia’s launch and others are working on product development –TEAC, Yamaha, Bush, Intempo, iRiver, PURE, Revo, Roberts Radio and Sangean.

For further information on digital radio in Australia visit: