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Powell Is Jazzed About Digital Radio

Powell Is Jazzed About Digital Radio

FCC Chairman Michael Powell is interested in digital radio. The chairman, Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein and several agency staffers toured the Ibiquity Digital and XM Satellite Radio booths on the exhibit floor at CES here in Las Vegas.
In an exclusive interview, Powell told Radio World he believes Ibiquity’s technology is sound and good for consumers, although he added, “We’ll see what consumers embrace” of all the digital radio technologies.
In the XM booth, Powell sat in a Mercedes equipped with the new XM Direct, which, with BlitzSafe cables, converts any satellite radio to an XM radio. Powell lingered in XM’s concept car, demoing real-time video for rear-seat entertainment and other ideas the satcaster is developing but isn’t ready to debut.
Powell says terrestrial radio must go digital. If it stays analog, he said, broadcasters will end up on the “ash heap” of technology.
Powell made the remarks during a discussion with Consumer Electronics Association President/CEO Gary Shapiro at the convention.