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RAI Raises Listening Quality With DAB+

Italian public service broadcaster confirms commitment toward digital standard

Gubitosi: Luigi Gubitosi was appointed RAI managing director in 2012 Luigi Gubitosi, managing director of the Italian public broadcaster, RAI, recently revealed information regarding the broadcaster’s commitment to radio listening quality.

“We deliver our customers a service, and quality is a key factor when dealing with service offerings” he said. Gubitosi also confirmed that the RAI would complete full DAB+ coverage of Northern and Central Italy by the end of 2014.

This move will result in a significant quality improvement for listeners thanks to the removal of interference caused by overloaded FM frequencies. Gubitosi’s recent statements are in line with the announcement made last April by Stefano Ciccotti, CEO of RAI Way (the RAI network operator), while speaking at a meeting held in Riva del Garda.

“RAI has not invested enough resources in the improvement of the quality of its FM signals. The proliferation of private radio stations created serious interference issues within the FM spectrum,” said Gubitosi. “We are still improving our FM network, while simultaneously we expect to achieve great quality improvements as more Italian regions move toward DAB+, which is able to dramatically enhance the sound quality.”

Radio RAI logo RAI is already on air with DAB+ broadcasts in the regions of South Tyrol and Trentino. The adjacent border region of Friuli will soon follow “and the same will happen in the entire area of Rome. We plan to complete our DAB+ coverage in both Northern and Central Italy by the end of 2014,” he said. Gubitosi also added that the RAI plans to carry out significant capital investments in its radio business.

As an immediate action, RAI DAB+ broadcasts from the Monte Mario site (the flagship RAI transmitter in Rome) recently switched from channel 12C to channel 12B. This is much more than a mere frequency swap: channel 12C RAI shared transmission facilities with Club DAB Italia (one of the two DAB+ national consortiums created by commercial radio stations), while channel 12B is exclusively assigned to the RAI, which is now covering Rome and environs through its own DAB+ network.