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BBC Asks for 3-Year Wait on Decision to Drop Analog Radio

BBC Asks for 3-Year Wait on Decision to Drop Analog Radio

The BBC has asked the British government for a 3-year grace period before lawmakers decide on a date certain for a radio analog “sunset.” The Guardian reports the BBC feels the country isn’t ready to drop analog for digital broadcasts and to do so too soon would be disruptive.
The broadcaster has poured lots on money into promoting the Eureka-147 system and has developed special digital-only programming to entice listeners to buy digital radios. Even so, the “Beeb” suggested a joint industry plan over the next three years to ensure a smooth transition, according to the Guardian.
The BBC has a plan to allocate five blocks of so-called Band III spectrum to be shared by the entire industry to allow the BBC and commercial radio services to move to digital, according to the account. This is necessary because new spectrum is needed to go digital with the Eureka-147 system.
Analog TV is to be shut off between 2008 and 2012. Roughly 50% of 24.5 million U.K. households receive a digital TV signal; that compares with 4% of households that own a digital radio.