Mexico's COFETEL Adopts HD Radio as Standard

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Mexico City - Feb 28, 2011 - The members of Mexico's telecommunications authority, COFETEL, agreed to send to COFEMER, the Mexican commission of regulation, the agreement for the adoption of IBOC for terrestrial digital radio in Mexico. The decision of the regulatory body is based principally on the international experience and recommendations of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), which distinguishes the IBOC standard as being the only one presently recommended for operation on the 535-1705kHz AM radio band, as well as the 88-108MHz FM radio band.

The document approved by the COFETEL commissioners contains a policy for transition to IBOC technology. The principal elements are:

  • Voluntary use for AM and FM station licensees.
  • The IBOC standard will be used in hybrid mode, maintaining the continuity of analog service and avoiding interference with other services.
  • It will be possible to transmit multiple programs within the assigned bandwidth, by taking advantage of the characteristics of the standard.
  • If only one program is transmitted at the same time, it must be the same program transmitted in analog. In the case of AM, the quality can be similar to that transmitted by FM stereo, and in the case of FM the quality can be comparable to a compact disc.

    The decision of voluntary use of IBOC does not prevent the continued evaluation of other broadcasting technologies in other bands of frequencies assigned to broadcasting. This decision seeks to promote investments and developments of the digital infrastructure within the bandsthat are currently used for AM and FM radio, with the goal of offering better service to the public.

    COFETEL will send the agreement to the Federal Commission for the Improvement of Regulations which will perform a consultation process within the framework of improved regulatory processes, as forseen in the Federal Law of Administrative Processes.

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