Friday, April 21, 2006

New Zealand WorldDAB/BCL Trials from September

Auckland -- WorldDAB and BCL (Broadcast Communications Ltd), New Zealand’s New Zealand's backbone transmission network are to trial digital audio broadcasting (DAB) for 12 months from September this year.

The trial will focus on a large geographic area centred on Auckland.

BCL will work closely with New Zealand’s regulatory body to develop a spectrum plan, a scheme for encouraging broadcasters to adopt digital radio and a policy for roll out of both commercial and public broadcasting services.

The WorldDAB Forum, an international non-governmental organisation whose role is to promote the awareness, adoption and implementation of DAB worldwide, will support BCL by allowing it to benefit from other countries’ successful regulatory systems for DAB.

Public broadcaster Radio New Zealand, and commercial broadcasters RadioWorks and Local Media Group, have agreed to take part in the trial.

In terms of the receiver manufacturing sector, already committed are: Sony, Morphy Richards, PURE Digital, Intempo Digital, Telechips and I- Tech, as well as network infrastructure vendors Radioscape and transmission equipment supplier Telequipment Pacific, who are providing Harris DAB transmission equipment.

WorldDAB and BCL say that commercial digital broadcasters services 'are expected' to launch in New Zealand within 18 to 24 months from the start of the trials.

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