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  1. 1. Digital Radio Development: John Yip Chief Engineer RTHK ABU Digital Broadcast Symposium 2010.03.09 How to drive it ?
  2. 2. 1. Introduction <ul><li>Major DR (Digital Radio) Technologies: </li></ul><ul><li>Eureka 147 DAB family </li></ul><ul><li>DRM family </li></ul><ul><li>HD-Radio </li></ul><ul><li>DAB and DAB+ </li></ul><ul><li>DAB, using MP2 / MUSICAM, has been around for 15+ years. Major growth in UK (10M Rx) </li></ul><ul><li>DAB+, using HEAAC v.2 </li></ul><ul><li>DRM </li></ul><ul><li>DRM30, DRM+ </li></ul><ul><li>More spectrum-efficient but receivers are more expensive. </li></ul><ul><li>Promising for providing distant services . </li></ul>
  3. 3. 2. Growth Factors (1) <ul><li>2.1 Key Factors Affecting Growth </li></ul><ul><li>(ref. ABU DBS 2008/2009, J.Yip) </li></ul>Driving Force (Digital Radio) DF dr = M dr [R, P, M, O] * T (Memory aid: Must Remove Promptly My Old Television) For Terrain factor (T), a basic description was given in ABU DBS2008 (J.Yip, Mobile TV Development).
  4. 4. 2. Growth Factors (2) <ul><li>2.2 Digital Radio, RPMO factors and their components : </li></ul>Regulatory, R : Pricing, P: Government leading in technology selection, consulting with broadcast and manufacturing industries Definitive timeframe for analog radio off Government incentives for the industry to invest in digital radio Liberal spectrum licensing/ allocation Spectrum availability Pricing of Digital Radio receivers
  5. 5. 2. Growth Factors (3) <ul><li>2.2 Digital Radio, RPMO factors and their components : </li></ul>Marketing, M: Other factors, O : Content: Exploitation of older audience’ passion for radio Exploitation of synergy with the Internet Strong and effective promotions by the industry Strong audience education campaigns Value-added services eg traffic, other data, slides Strong local programming Wide range of new program contents Large number of new channels/ contents
  6. 6. 2. Growth Factors (4) <ul><li>2.2 Digital Radio, RPMO factors and their components: </li></ul>Consumer Habits: Device Attributes: Identifiable major listening preferences/ habits Strong Radio listening habits (based on hours/ week) Attractive designs/ functions; Recording/ playback, including AM/FM for convenience Built-in LCD, for showing slide shows, EPG and other PAD Easy of use of receiving equipment, compact radios Availability of a wide variety of receiver types
  7. 7. 2. Growth Factors (5) Quality: <ul><li>The above could be copied and pasted into the RPMO calculator given in ABU DBS 2009 & downloadable from RTHK, under HDTV and IPTV Development (2009-04), for a detailed analysis: </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>There are numerous papers written on the subject, pointing out broadly the main drivers for DR growth : </li></ul><ul><li>New digital radio stations & contents, </li></ul><ul><li>To attract consumers to new devices and designs/ features, </li></ul><ul><li>Improved sound quality (given good reception). </li></ul>Audio Quality (based on kbps and encoding eg HEAAC v.2) Comprehensive and strong signal coverage, including indoors
  8. 8. 2. Growth Factors (6) <ul><li>These correspond to the “O” factors in the RPMO analytical model. </li></ul><ul><li>Receiver pricing is often mentioned. Consumers’ economic affordability is normally not an issue in a developed economy. The issue is related to opportunity cost, not to affordability. </li></ul><ul><li>A related equation (ABU DBS2009) on receiver pricing, is as follows: </li></ul><ul><li>Price A = Price B * (ratio of GDP/capita) * (ratio of consumption in hours/week) </li></ul><ul><li>Further to the RPMO model, there is an important externality due to the limited technological competitiveness of Digital Radio in the multimedia (audio-visual) environment, from the consumers’ perspective. This externality (Tc) is described as follows. </li></ul>
  9. 9. 2. Growth Factors (7) 2.3 Technological Competitiveness (Tc): <ul><li>If “Seeing is Believing” , then Radio has been born handicapped, as it does not provide moving video information/ entertainment. </li></ul><ul><li>The following table on Tc (Table 1) is postulated, to show the limited competitiveness of Digital Radio in the modern multimedia environment. </li></ul><ul><li>So, a rollout of digital radio needs extra efforts and investments, as Digital Radio has to compete for the hotly-pursued consumer attention. </li></ul>
  10. 10. 2. Growth Factors (8) Table 1:- Technological Competitiveness (A/V), Tc, postulated 12 3.3 2 1 0.3 0 0 AM Radio 11 3.7 2 1 0.7 0 0 DAB 10 4.8 1 3 0.8 0 0 Internet Radio 9 5 3 1 1 0 0 FM Radio 8 5.3 2 2.5 0.8 0 0 DAB+ 7 5.4 3 1.5 0.3 0.6 0.2 Mobile TV 6 5.7 1 1 1 2.7 0.9 Analog TV 5 5.8 0 2 0.8 3 1 DTT-SD 4 6.3 1 3 0.8 1.5 0.5 Internet TV 3 6.8 0 3 0.8 3 1 IPTV-SD 2 11 0 3 2 6 2 IPTV-HD 1 14 0 2 3 9 3 DTT-HD Rank Total Score Mobility Content range Audio Video, weighted Video
  11. 11. 3. Digital Radio Developments in Selected Economies (1) We shall explore the growth factors by referring to the developments in UK (well advanced in DAB), Australia (having a good start in DAB+) and Hong Kong (with digital radio emerging). The following is a summary table of the various factors: RPMO, Terrain, Growth, and estimated RPMO values using the aggregate curve (Media Digest, 2009-04, J. Yip, Figure 1) developed for HDTV and IPTV. The curve has been used as a surrogate, due to limited digital radio penetration, apart from that in UK. (Development in N. America is not included.)
  12. 12. 3. Digital Radio Developments in Selected Economies (2) Table 2:- RPMO (Digital Radio Development in Selected Economies) Yet to occur. CRA promoting intensively. Heavy promotions. M Est. US$50+. GDP/cap. (PPP) for HK = $42,700 Rx cost = 0.12% of GDP/cap. A$79+ (about US$70). GDP/cap. (PPP) for Aust. = $38,500 Rx cost = 0.18% of GDP/cap. DAB receivers typically cost ₤ 35 (US$55). GDP/cap. (PPP) for UK = $35,400 Rx cost = 0.16% of GDP/cap. P Under development. No new entrant for 6 years. Automatic license extension of 12 years for analog radio licensees running also DAB. R VHF Band III available for DR (Digital Radio). Started DAB+ in May 2009. Started DAB since mid 1990's but main push in end 2001. General Hong Kong Australia/ Sydney UK/ London
  13. 13. Table 2:- RPMO (Digital Radio Dev. in Selected Economies) (Continued) Digital Radio helps alleviate AM reception problems. DAB+: improved audio quality Limited audio quality O: (Quality) Projected 50+ DAB+ Rx types 30+ DAB+ Rx types Hundreds of DAB Rx types O: (Device Attributes) Est. 12 h/ week Est. 21 h/ week Est. 22 h/ week (dropped from 24.5 to 21.5 over time) O: (Consumer Habits) 13 AM/ FM channels (RTHK: 7, Commercial: 6). Small market. Need to explore long-tail/ niche/ thematic services. Many channels (27+ in Sydney). DAB+ facilitates PAD. Many channels (50+ in London) O: (Content) Hong Kong Australia/ Sydney UK/ London
  14. 14. Table 2:- RPMO (Digital Radio Dev. in Selected Economies) (Continued) N/A 3.5 3.8 Est. RPMO Value N/A Est. 3.5% pa Est. 4.3% pa (34% by end 2009) Est. Growth pa (av.) Highly unfavourable; dense high-rise buildings. Narrow streets and double-decker buses. Favourable eg in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide Favourable eg in London Terrain Factor Hong Kong Australia/ Sydney UK/ London
  15. 15. Fig. 1: Benchmarking curves for HDTV and IPTV, based on RPMO analyses
  16. 16. 4. Fostering Digital Radio Growth <ul><li>Based on the RPMO analytical model and on the data in Table 2, the following measures are required: </li></ul><ul><li>Proactive regulatory framework, providing incentives for the industry to invest. </li></ul><ul><li>Lowering digital radio receiver prices. </li></ul><ul><li>Prolonged, effective promotional campaigns. </li></ul><ul><li>New/ extended range of contents, with local programming. </li></ul><ul><li>Exploiting consumers’ habits eg listening to radio whilst on the internet, reading, working. </li></ul>
  17. 17. 4. Fostering Digital Radio Growth (cont.) <ul><li>Exploiting older people’s passion for radio. </li></ul><ul><li>Wide range of receiver types with attractive designs/ features, including AM/FM. </li></ul><ul><li>High audio quality by using suitable bitrates. </li></ul><ul><li>Strong reception even for indoors (eg 76-80 dB uV/m); using echo-canceling repeaters. </li></ul><ul><li>There is no single measure for ensuring success in a rollout; each economy needs to set its own strategies. </li></ul>
  18. 18. 5. Summary <ul><li>Rolling out digital radio successfully is challenging, partly due to the limited technological competitiveness of digital radio in the intensifying multimedia environment (Table 1). The RPMO generic growth equation and the benchmarking curve (albeit ballpark) could be useful for planning a digital radio rollout. </li></ul><ul><li>In Hong Kong, HDTV and IPTV have had good TVH penetration figures reaching some 40% and 50% (ie averaged growth rates being 20% pa and 10% pa) respectively. For digital radio in Hong Kong, Table 2 has revealed several obstacles. Major push is needed to parallel the growth in UK/ Australia ie attaining 3 - 4% pa. </li></ul>
  19. 19. ~ Thank You ~