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Location-Based Service Tech Proposals Due Soon

A geo-coding task group of the NRSC hopes to hear from developers on how to expand location-based services for radio data broadcasting

Responses to the National Radio System Committee’s Request for Proposals on location-based services are due Oct. 15.

A Geo-Coding Task Group of the NRSC has been looking into how to expand location-based services for radio data broadcasting. With the RFP, the group hopes to identify more services that use geo-tagging and location-based service protocols.

GUTG chair Mike Starling, vice president and chief technology officer of NPR and executive director of NPR Labs, says the group has received at least one response and that “targeted components of broadcaster-based location-based services are encouraged in addition to any possible end-to-end technology solutions.”

HD Radio and FM analog-based RDS are being used to disseminate traffic information, which is one type of location-based service. The NRSC hopes to build on that and find other such services to form the basis for future NRSC standards and/or guidelines.

Several case studies are described in the RFP to developers, called: “Location-based Services Protocols for Broadcast Radio Transmission.” They range from uses like specific, detailed targeted advertising, to narrowly targeted public emergency warnings, to navigation system enhancements — all delivered by radio transmission over personal devices.

NRSC representatives told Radio World earlier the idea is to have radio station icons — or other relevant information — pop up on a navigation map on a user’s portable device, for example, when driving or walking through a particular area. The NRSC is looking at the underpinnings of the technology and trying to figure out how to do it efficiently with both FM RDS or HD Radio technology. “We need to have live geo-coded systems other people are using,” they said, pointing to the need to keep radio relevant to consumers.

The Geo-Coding Task Group developed the RFP. It hopes any system submitted for consideration has already been lab and field tested.

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