RTE Exec Predicts FM, DAB, Internet Platforms will Converge

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Dave Timpson, Platforms Coordinator for RTE, says we're a close having an app that will identify a free-to-air audio source while simultaneously accessing the metadata online.

Apr 2, 2012 - An interesting article has appeared in the Irish Times, mainly about the growing popularity of podcasting throughout the U.K. However, there are comments about DAB in Ireland towards the end. RTE has six digital stations that cover Dublin, Cork, and Limerick; about 53 percent of the population. Progress in covering the remainder of the island has stalled.

Dave Timpson, Platforms Coordinator for RTE, is quoted extensively in the article. For example, despite "slow progress" in the expansion of DAB coverage, Timpson has no doubt that "digital is the future" according to the author.

"Over the next 30 years, digital free-to-air services are going to be very important because there isn't the amount of bandwidth to support the growing listenership," Timpson said. "Everyone talks about the future of radio being on the Internet, but that's just not true."

Timpson points out that mobile listeners are using bandwidth to stream their services and effectively paying for what is a free national service. He expects the current platforms to converge, allowing users to receive content from digital sources, FM sources, and the Internet simultaneously. "We're a few months away from having an app that will identify a free-to-air audio source while simultaneously accessing the metadata - the pictures and information about the program - from the Web. That's a much more efficient way to service mass audiences," Timpson said.

Unfortunately the article doesn't say on which device that app will run.

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