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Czech Radio Sets Off Toward Digital

Czech public broadcaster looks to initiate first phase of digital radio between 2015 and 2017

Czech Radio has unveiled its plan toward digital radio output. Experts are planning a seven step process for the broadcaster toward digital broadcasting, including appropriate legislation, national coordination, adequate financing, private sector engagement, support for quality content and news services, an information and marketing campaign and statutory support for DAB receivers.

Major metropolitan areas — Prague, Brno, Ostrava and Plzeň — are set to be covered during the pilot digital transmissions, taking place between 2015 and 2017, the EBU said in a release. Regular digital broadcasting will be instituted in 2017. Regional broadcasting will follow, depending on technical conditions and frequency specifications.

The switching-off of all analog broadcasting should occur no later than 2025, on the condition that all Czech Radio programs go fully digital, it said.

Czech Radio will digitally broadcast D-dur, Radio Wave, Plus, Rádio Junior, Jazz, Rádio Retro and a special sport service. It will also launch an experimental digital radio service for Prague, reaching 10 to 15 percent of the national population.

“This process will enable us to provide our listeners with more varied content and services, to enhance the quality of audio transmission and to ensure the further development of radio broadcasting,” said Peter Duhan, the director general of Czech Radio. “As a public service medium, Czech Radio has been, and will be, at the helm of the digitization process.”