WASHINGTON The National Radio Systems Committee endorsed a digital FM radio broadcast technology Thursday (Nov. 29) and recommended that it be approved as an upgrade to current U.S. analog FM broadcasts.
An industry group called the in-band on-channel (IBOC) technology developed by iBiquity Digital Radio (Columbia, Md.) a "significant improvement over today's existing analog services." The testing group recommended that the Federal Communications Commission authorize IBOC digital audio broadcasting as a U.S. standard.
IBOC technology gained favor with regulators because it does not require them to allocate new broadcast spectrum as the airwaves become more congested. The group also said IBOC showed minimal interference with analog FM reception.
U.S. introduction of IBOC technology is scheduled for 2002, and iBiquity said it plans to exhibit transmission equipment at the National Association of Broadcasters' convention next April.