National DAB operator Digital One is remaining tight-lipped about a potential new station on the platform, after a new test transmission appeared.
The service – named Karma on DAB radios – appeared a week ago, sparking rumours of another station going onto D1 across the UK.
Digital One's Operations Director Glyn Jones told RadioToday.co.uk: "I guess we got a bit bored calling our test transmissions 'D1 Test A' and the like. However, ultimately 'Karma' is just a test transmission. In the past year, we have used a variety of names for these."
Ahead of the launch of Smooth Radio on the multiplex, a test called Velvet appeared, while Muscles was the pre-launch name for what became Absolute Radio Extra ('Abs' – geddit?)
Glyn added: "We’re not saying any more about Karma, how long it will stay on air or whether it will turn into a radio station at some point."
Some digital radios don't automatically find a new station immediately when it goes on air so test channels are used to gradually get into the radio sets' memories – so if a new service were to go live, Karma would just be renamed and there'd be no need for consumers to retune their radios.
Glyn told us: "If anyone can’t see Karma on their list of stations they could tune into Planet Rock and then see if Karma has appeared and/or do a rescan/retune."
In previous times when D1 were testing out new channels, they used to use the Birdsong channel, which got a bit more publicity in some parts than full service stations. Glyn adds: "While we recognise that Karma will never attract that sort of international news media attention, we quite like the fact that our test transmissions are attracting some interest from a small group of crossword enthusiasts. But we don’t want too much publicity for Karma – we’ve got a dozen radio stations on air and we’d rather they made the headlines."
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