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DRM workshop looks at digital radio trial in Africa

Radio industry leaders in Southern Africa are gathering for a workshop to examine the effectiveness of trials of Digitial Radio Mondiale in Pretoria. 

Organisers say the conference in the South African capital from 16-17 October 2014 offers key stakeholders in the region a hands-on demonstration of the potential of the DRM digital radio standard with live local test transmissions using and scheduling DRM equipment. Representatives are attending from Zambia, Mozambique, Lesotho and Botswana as well as from the South African Department of Communications, the network operator Sentech, the public broadcaster SABC, manufacturers and community associations.

The DRM30 trial was launched in Pretoria in June this year and the first results feature in the workshop. Other key DRM topics on the agenda include: energy savings; extended broadcast coverage; the potential for local production of receivers and considerations for a launch of the DRM standard.

The newly-appointed Chair of the Southern African Platform, Dr Roelf Petersen of Radio Pulpit, said: “DRMSA aims to put forward a credible strategy and structure for digital audio transmissions in Southern Africa. We believe that the platform can offer excellent broadcasting information and manufacturing solutions … for the whole of Southern Africa.”

DRM Chairman Ruxandra Obreja said: “The DRM standard is … ideal for large and diverse countries such as those in Africa. DRM can become a truly African standard opening up new possibilities for listeners and opportunities for local industries.”