In an effort to persuade listeners to go digital, Digital Radio UK wants to offer a radio exchange scheme.
Similar to how the car scrappage scheme worked, consumers will be able to swap an analogue radio for a discount on a new digital radio, with old sets going to a good cause.
The government’s 2015 target switch-off date for FM is increasingly regarded as unrealistic by the industry. An exchange scheme would help boost the number of digital sets in Britain’s homes, which currently sits at around 10.5m compared to the estimated 100m analogue radios in use.
A Digital Radio UK spokeswoman told Radio Today "Digital Radio is working with broadcasters, manufacturers and retailers … to drive digital radio take-up. One of the ideas under review is a scheme whereby consumers will recieve a discount on a new digital set in exchange for their analogue set … No decisions or commitment has been made yet as further details will be available as the projects progress."
Commenting on the story, a senior industry source told Radio Today that he believes today’s announcement is “a good idea in principle but like most things in radio right now, the PR is better than the reality. FM owners will only get involved with this provided ALL new DAB radio's have both FM and DAB within their sets. FM is still a good solid platform and while DAB is good for many it is not good for all.”
In recent weeks, Digital Radio UK, the body tasked with preparing the UK to go digital, has demonstrated they may agree by [link=http://radiotoday.co.uk/news.php?extend.5547]announcing[/link] they are working with key manufacturers for an integrated station list, which tunes seamlessly between broadcasters on FM and Digital.