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Fred Jacobs is President of Jacobs Media, a media research and consulting firm. Jacobs Media clients have included CBS Radio, Premiere Radio Networks, Citadel, Greater Media, MTV Networks, Playboy, Amazon, Electronic Arts, NPR, Sylvan Learning Centers, and Taubman Malls. Learn more about the company here.


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« 2B, 1M, Oh My! | Main | New Zune Rising - Part 2 »




"New Zune To Include HD Radio"

"Bob Struble, President/CEO of iBiquity Digital Corporation, commented, We are very excited about the launch of HD Radio technology on Microsoft’s Zune HD. We are planning with the HD Radio Alliance to promote Zune HD to consumers."


MS decided to opt for the HD Radio chipset, along with those confiscatory HD Radio licensing and chipset fees, because of the free publicity for the Zune HD from the HD Radio Alliance; the previous Zunes only sold about 3 million, versus 170 million iPods. I'm sure those Zune HD consumers will be really pleased about the crappy HD Radio recepion and dropouts.

If one looks at the sales rankings for the Zune HDs, the 16GB Zune HD has fallen off the top-100 in Amazon's electronic sales, and the 32GB version is at a miserable 40th place, at one time falling to 44th. Of course, this lack of consumer interest can be extapolated to other retailers, as well. What is especially interesting, is that the new iPod Nano's, with those ANALOG FM-tuner for tagging, is at a miserable 24th place, showing that the addition of FM-tuners in MP3s has not made those devices more desirable:


"Struble: Radio Is the Last Analog Medium Standing"

"HD Radio portables — No one's buying a lot of transistor radios anymore. The headphone radios that people used to run around the park with are all gone, and if radio wants to continue to be a reach medium, they've got to be in the devices people carry, which increasingly are cell phones, MP3 players, personal navigation devices... Insignia HD — I think this will be a nice little interim step for jogging or working out. It proves the viability [of the technology] and hopefully we'll get sales; but no, this is not going to sell in the hundreds of thousands... Radio alone — the sad reality of where it is — as a standalone device, it just doesn't exist anymore as a category. Nobody goes into Best Buy and says 'Where's the radio department?'"


Bob Struble admitted that the Insignia sales have been a flop, as all HD Radio sales, but we already knew that (I think that Struble stole that Best Buy comment from Orbitcast).


How long does iBiquity and their unwanted digital system have to hang around before the world gets so tired they vomit? Consumers have demonstrated lack of interest and so have most manufacturers - many of which have abandoned it. IBiquity had to go to some no-name company to get a chip-set because the big ones decided long ago it wasn't worth it. (Sony for instance) Is that the plan - force feed it till the world finally gives in or it's mandated by the FCC? All you proponents claim a big victory when there's a little tiny sign of life in a just-about-dead technology that its become laughable if it were not so sickening.


I love blog posts about HD radio. It's like a morning show spending an hour on Michael Jackson or cheating sposues - it's guaranteed to get the phones ringing. With HD radio, there's never a shortage of emotion or opinion. Today's post clearly talks about the immense challenges facing HD radio, graphically underscored by the chart labeled "HD Radio Barriers." It is far from glowing or positive. So don't shoot your wads today, when there's a second part to this post. And thanks again for reading our blog.


I don't believe you're still pushing this junk.



Really - It's time to move on from iBiquity and hd radio. It's not working and the issues and problems will only get worse when/if a power increase is granted. Time to pull the plug.


Well Fred, seems to me that most radio listeners don't even know they need hd radio. HD radio is a phenomenon generated by people in business with large pockets and, ironically, the same people that are destroying radio. The ones that comment on blogs like these are mostly the "little people" who actually see the scam that's perpetrated by those large pockets.

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