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India tests Digital Radio Mondiale

Mondiale transmission is superior to the exiting one, and it helps in text-data transfers, reports Satyen Mohapatra.
None | By Satyen Mohapatra, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JAN 31, 2007 10:40 PM IST

Since Jan 26, 2007, India has started tests on Digital Radio Mondiale  transmission which is qualitatively much superior to the existing analog transmission and also supports text-data transmission.

In an exclusive interview with Director (Engg) All India Radio Yogendra Pal said, "DRM will be available only on special DRM receiver which will allow us to provide the listener number of Programme Associated Data. So while a listener is listening to a song we can let the listener see the name of the movie, the name of the singer, composer, on the LCD screen on the Radio."

He said that the government would liaison with Railway, Civil Aviation and other ministries whose messages could be flashed on the radio 'screens' whether it is on train and airlines arrival, departures or other general messages. News headlines and stock exchange rates could also be regularly transmitted, he added. 

"This can also give us additional revenues and we can also generate more revenue by transmitting  advertisements," he added.

In the Eleventh Plan the government has proposed to go in for digital radio, he added.

"We have given the government the proposal to first start digital broadcast services for External Services and in our Regional Services," he said.

Digital Radio Mondiale technology is supposed to be the latest technology which does not require additional spectrum allocation and is felt to be more suitable for Indian conditions. Experiments on digital transmission have been going on for the past some years on eureka technology which requires additional spectrum.

A decoder has been installed at the AIR transmitter at Khampur, Delhi for the broadcast of digital transmission.

The government is importing a number of DRM receivers for testing their quality under Indian conditions.

One such receiver which can take upto 128 text characters at a time in a single frame will be displayed at the Broadcast Expo at Pragati Maidan beginning on Thursday, he added.

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