Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Digital radio demonstration launches in France

Lyon, 20 May 2011: Yesterday saw the launch of the digital radio project, RNT Lyon, in Lyon, France. At a press conference organised by the project leader, VDL, over 50 journalists joined the RNT Lyon partners to officially announce the launch of digital radio in Lyon. Radio listeners in the Lyon area can now tune in to 15 new stations on digital offering a variety of programme types.

Senior members of the Conseil supérieur de l'audiovisuel (CSA) Mr Patrice Gelinet and Mr Rachid Arhab opened the event with Mr Gélinet saying ‘The digital radio roll out in France is taking longer than expected, but has not stopped’. Mr Arhab added, ‘It’s a great day for radio in France, and I am happy that we are speaking about digital radio in a positive way’ He went on to emphasis that future tests and trials of digital radio should be directed towards the consumer.

Attending the launch were representatives from each of the 15 new digital stations on-air in Lyon. The stations represented at the press conference spoke of the 1980s decision in France to allow commercial radio. At this time they were seen as pioneers of radio. Once again there is the feeling that digital radio offers them the opportunity to become pioneers. Digital radio was seen by all to provide new opportunities in terms of content and revenue streams something which is attractive to all commercial broadcasters: “the future of radio is digital”.

Stations included on the demonstration are; Africa N°1, Cap Sao, FG DJ Radio, France Maghreb 2, Impact FM, Latina FM, MFM radio, Nova, Ouï FM, Radio Orient, Radio Scoop, RCF, Sol FM, Sud Radio and TSF Jazz. These stations will join in the promotion of the RNT Lyon project both on analogue and on their new digital stations.

On display at the press conference were a large range of digital radio receivers provided by project partners; PURE, Revo, Sony, DUAL, Roberts, Lingo and Tivoli. These receivers covered all price ranges and included kitchen radios, hi-fi sytems, iPod docking stations and iPod mobile adapters. Hybrid radios including digital, FM and internet connected radios showed that radios future is one of combined technologies offering a rich radio experience.

The press conference also launched a listener awareness campaign providing information to educate consumers on the benefits of digital radio. To do this www.rntlyon.com a website is now live giving radio listeners in Lyon details of; what’s on-air, where to buy a digital radio receiver, which areas in Lyon are covered by the digital signal and news on events and giveaways.

The RNT Lyon project is supported by local retailers Auchan, Boulanger, DARTY, Grosbill, FNAC, Musikit (Digital Group) & Virgin. Digital radio products are currently available in these stores and the www.rntlyon.fr website includes store information so consumers can easily find a local digital radio retailer.

A debate on digital radio and its place in the French radio market and in the wider European zone ended the morning. Mr Yannick Andre-Masse, CEO of VDL, the project leader, said ‘Again we need to focus on the listener, these new services offer listeners in Lyon something new and exciting in terms of radio. We are concentrating very much on getting the message out there – Le radio numerique c’est fantastique!’

The next event for the RNT Lyon project will be a public event in Place de la République, Lyon on 25th June 2011. Listeners will be able to hear some of the new digital station DJs live, with information given out and competitions to win some of the fantastic digital radio receivers now available!

(Source : Press Release via WorldDMB forum)

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