[opendtv] Re: Here we go again...

  • From: John Willkie <johnwillkie@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Wed, 2 Jul 2008 16:12:43 -0400 (EDT)

Maybe it's different for old fogies on the Right coast, but in Southern 
California, it's quite common for people to buy cars based on car features and 
not the type and style of floor mats, or even the radio.

I might have missed it, but it's been more than a decade since I saw a car 
commercial that even mentioned the radio as being a product attribute.

Unless I've missed something, car radios seem to have one or two standard form 
factors and there are a wide variety of "after-market" radios available, in a 
vibrant market.  I am even of the understanding that car radios are cheaper 
than the cars themselves.

I am even of the belief that a car without an OEM radio is often cheaper than a 
car with a radio, but that all cars have the standard form factor(s) that 
permit -- and I realize this may be shocking to some -- a customer to add an 
after-market radio to a radioless car.  

I suspect that one factor leading to lower than anticipated adoption of 
iBiquity is the excrebable commercials -- they make fun of prospects AND 
customers -- put out by HD radio partners.  Clear Channel San Diego has these 
insulting exercises all day and night.  It just makes me think they are 
clueless about marketing.  A new series started up in the last week or so, but 
they still are beyond edgy.

Since iBiquity seems to charge exorbiant IPR fees (at least to broadcasters) 
including $5,000 per year per station for a license fee (above any equipment 
purchase/maintenance) I suspect that HD radio is something of a large market 
phenomenon.  To the extent it is a phenom.

It's probably not unfair to assume that makers are also charged high fees.  
Since few customers chose cars based on the radio, and even fewer are seeking 
HD radio [a horrible marketing name, by the way], I suspect that adding HD 
radio to all -- say -- Ford models would add to their costs, and wouldn't help 
them stem the sales/revenue/profits slide.

I'm no fan of paying for content that is otherwise available for free.  
However, if you look beyond that, there are powerful attractants for XM and 
Sirius.  The latter offers NPR, and the former, among other offerings, includes 
three Afro-pop channels.  I doubt that among the "multitude" of HD radio 
channels out there, there aren't two Afro pop channels in the U.S.  XM also 
offers at least three reggae channels.  Not reggae programs, three reggae 

Of course, 'bert could prove me wrong.  Does he have a iBiquity radio in his 
car?  Has he ever bought a car based on the radio that was installed?

John Willkie

-----Original Message-----
>From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
>Sent: Jul 2, 2008 3:51 PM
>To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
>Subject: [opendtv] Re: Here we go again...
>John Shutt wrote:
>> Patience, Bert.  Things are in the pipeline for OEM HD Radio.
>> http://delphi.com/manufacturers/auto/entertainment/audio/hd/
>Thanks, John. Here's to hoping.
>Ford is offering HD Radio now, even as backfit to models as far back as
>The cars that offer HD Radio are listed here. Not nearly enough yet.
>check it out.
>No word yet from GM itself, although it looks like you're onto
>something. These guys rarely dsclose what they have in the works.
>Aftermarket might work, but not so good if the radio display is
>integrated with other system, such as OnStar.
>This is probably like FM radio. It needs to be painlessly available in
>cars before the medium can take off. The converse, of course, is also
>true. If OTA TV becomes difficult to receive in apartments, because the
>distribution plant was usurped by one (or more) MVPD, even people who
>would otherwise use it often lose that option.
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