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DAB on test at the Festival

A short-term test transmission will occupy Digital One from 26th June to 1st July, for a demonstration at the Radio Festival.

But the most interesting elements of the test transmission will not be available on standard UK shop-bought DAB digital radios, as it will demonstrate to delegates at the Radio Festival how advanced services can further enhance the listener experience on DAB digital radio. It shows technology and standards that are ready to be deployed now, which can bring additional benefits and features to listeners.

The [i]DataandAudio Test [/i]is a collaboration between Arqiva, Fraunhofer IIS, Audi, Global Radio, the BBC and Digital One.

The 192kb/s channel is supporting both data and audio – up to 160kb/s will be used for the audio with the remaining capacity carrying the non-audio data. The test transmission will include a loop of stereo audio extracts (which will be repeated approximately every 10 to 15 minutes) with standard DLS/radiotext and signalling data. However, there will be additional elements which will be demonstrated via in-car systems, mobile and fixed indoor receivers at Techcon and the Radio Festival 2009. These technologies/applications are not currently widely available and/or cannot be received on a typical shop-bought DAB digital radio.

The special features include a slideshow, displayed on larger than normal screens built into the radios, and Journaline, which delivers high value news, information and entertainment at very low data rates. Additional software not yet standard in digital radios is required to allow a radio to display the information.

In addition, Surround Sound will be demonstrated. Consumers using standard UK shop-bought DAB digital radios will be able to listen to the same audio, but only in stereo (not as surround sound). This demonstrates that the technology is backward compatible.

The test transmission is designed to demonstrate a range of technologies which could eventually become part of regular DAB digital radio transmission in the UK. However, this would depend on cooperation between broadcasters, receiver manufacturers, retailers and regulators. Digital One has no current plans or timetable to launch services using these technologies, but hopes the demonstration sparks interest in the capabilities of digital radio.

Additionally, ITIS Holdings are demonstrating their TPEG traffic information service at the Radio Festival. The TEC application is designed to transmit traffic event information which, along with their Traffic Flow TFP application, will assist dynamic guidance systems for routing for navigation devices. This is a permanent service and will continue to broadcast after the DataandAudio Test service ceases, although additional software not yet standard in UK devices is required to view the data.

Book your free virtual place at the festival with the Radio Today blog [link=https://radiotoday.co.uk/live]here[/link].

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