EPG Is Hot Topic at NAB Radio Show

NAB FASTROAD project team will deliver update.
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NAB FASTROAD project team will deliver update.

Of the slew of engineering sessions being offered at the upcoming NAB Radio Show, the one covering the progress on an HD Radio Electronic Program Guide seems especially interesting.

I’ve reported previously on the EPG, but until now, it’s been on Ibiquity’s list of “future” uses planned as an advanced feature of the system.

The EPG is a project targeted by the NAB’s FASTROAD (Flexible Advanced Services for Television & Radio On All Devices) technology advocacy program.

The NAB FASTROAD project team for the HD Radio EPG initiative — BIA Financial Network, Broadcast Signal Lab and Unique Interactive — is working with Ibiquity Digital to improve the radio user interface to make them easier for consumers to use.

“Unlike television or Internet services, users seeking content on broadcast radio are limited largely to ‘seek’ and ‘scan’ buttons,” said Rick Ducey, chief strategy officer, BIA Financial Network. “With HD Radio multicasting rollouts, the task of understanding ‘what’s on’ radio in a market or from receivable stations in adjacent markets becomes even harder for listeners. Broadcast radio needs an easy EPG interface for listeners to help it be competitive with other audio services.”

The group will discuss the issues, its progress and next steps during “The HD Radio EPG Project,” on Friday, Sept. 19, at 10 a.m.


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Is EPG on a Fast Road for Radio?

EPG on HD Radio started with an NAB project called FASTROAD, or Flexible Advanced Services for Television & Radio on All Devices. The NAB signed a contract with BIA Financial Network Inc. and its partner Broadcast Signal Lab to create a practical system for an electronic program guide for local broadcasters in the United States.