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Rehr Lauds Broadcasters’ Efforts to Distribute Content on Multiple Platforms

NAB leader highlights efforts to get HD-R chips on cell phones

In his opening keynote at the NAB Show here in Las Vegas, National Association of Broadcasters President and CEO David K. Rehr said even though the world is facing an economic crisis, broadcasters are forging ahead, spurring innovation and creating multiple platforms to deliver content. That includes incorporating FM chips in cell phones as well as exploring all the possibilities of the Internet, he said.

He reminded attendees that the Radio Heard Here campaign was launched at this show two years ago to win the medium more recognition. NAB launched it in conjunction with the RAB and the HD Digital Radio Alliance. The goal of the campaign is to have to have “one voice” for radio, he said, and fits into NAB’s long-term Radio 2020 initiative. “Radio 2020 is a 12-year commitment to set any misperceptions right, and build on the ‘love affair’ listeners have with radio,” he said.

NAB is working with the alliance to educate the public, manufacturers and the auto industry about HD Radio, he said. Automakers offering HD Radio features as factory or dealer options span 14 brands across 82 models.

To get more HD Radio receivers in the marketplace, NAB has encouraged U.S. mobile phone carriers to include FM chips in cell phones. “This would bring radio to upwards of 250 million devices in consumers’ hands. FM receivers in cell phones could provide another revenue stream for cellular network providers. And integrated FM receivers would give cell phone users access to the Emergency Alert System.”

Rehr continued: “These announcements are relied upon as a lifeline for Americans during emergencies, and we’re getting a great response. Verizon Wireless, AT&T and T-Mobile are including FM radio-capable handset devices in their offerings. And we’re working to get Apple on board as well.”