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How DTS Envisions Its Future

DTS, new owner of HD Radio, is seeking to expand that digital technology further into the midpriced segment.

DTS, new owner of HD Radio, is seeking to expand that digital technology further into the mid-priced segment. That’s one of the insights from an investors’ conference call led by DTS Chairman/CEO Jon Kirchner and reported by Radio World sister publication Twice.

It said iBiquity Digital Radio had been posting net operating losses when it was acquired late last year but that DTS has “made significant progress realizing operational and financial synergies,” Kirchner said.

DTS expects to move HD Radio technology “out of the premium priced segment into the more mid-priced segment” while it works on more effective cost implementations on ICs that will hit the market in the next couple years, he said.

According to Twice, Kirchner said HD Radio penetration reached about 37% of new cars sold in the U.S. in 2015 and is “well-represented as a standard feature among the higher end of the automotive segment as well as in premium infotainment systems and more moderately priced vehicles.”

DTS sees HD Radio as an opportunity to bring its other audio technologies into the car. Once HD Radio content is in the car, “there is an opportunity for DTS’ other technologies to enhance the presentation of that content inside the vehicle,” Kirchner said.

The move to autonomous cars will have a positive impact on these efforts, Kirchner said. Autonomous vehicles “will begin to change the opportunity for more immersive entertainment experiences in the vehicles as you no longer have to focus on perhaps controlling the vehicle and can simply maximize the time and experience while you’re in it,” he explained.

DTS said company sales fell 4% in 2015 to $138.2 million, and it posted a net loss of $12.3 million compared to the previous year’s $27.1 million net income. Revenues in 2016 are forecast at $180 million to $190 million.

Read the full Twice article, which includes DTS revenue figures and trends in other product sectors such as DTS:X, Play-Fi and mobile.