• A second law firm, Galex Wolf, LLC, is now apparently working on the class-action suit targeting HD radio. An email to the firm inquiring as to whether this action would include radio stations that have filed interference complaints (but got little or no response from the FCC, which is firmly in the pocket of the big operators) brought this response, along with a link to a form for joining the action:
In our possible class action investigation, we need to hear from “consumers” on their HD radio vehicle issues. Please feel free to circulate the link below. There is an HD Radio issue form for the consumer to complete and submit: http://representingpeople.com/hdradio/index.html
Perhaps a move by aggrieved radio stations might constitute a separate action. A full run-down of events can be found on Greg Smith’s hdradiofarce.com website, here, along with information on the service bulletins (TSBs) issued by the various car makers about the funky radios.
• A hot-and-heavy “discussion” on HD can be found here, a perfect example of the age of incivility posted on here (“The Age of Incivility”) — where, under the guise of anonymity, anyone can be as obnoxious and even physically threatening as they feel like without thought of repercussion, legal or otherwise. This is what all too often passes as reasoned discourse in the cyber world nowadays, as well as illustrating the lengths “supporters” of this failed technology will go to out-shout those trying to spread the word of this failure. Goon seems to be in vogue.
• Subaru is now being touted as the first Japanese automaker selling the HD radio as an option, though one email suggests it’s not high on the swag list:
I’m holding here in my hot little hand a Subaru brochure for the 2011 Forester. The literature goes through all the new features for the different models with all kinds of nice photos of the car. What’s this, buried deep in the small print? Oh yeah, if you look hard enough you can see at the very end of the list of features a very short sentence stating HD Radio technology available for the “Limited” and Touring Models. Now this is nothing to be proud of. It’s almost like they’re ashamed to admit it and it’s certainly not a selling point.
• Also of note is the new book from the UK’s Grant Goddard, “DAB Digital Radio: Licensed to Fail,” in which he predicts the ultimate downfall of DAB, Britain’s version of digital radio. Find a review here. In the review, author Andy Sennitt speaks of dealings in the Old World that smack of FCC skullduggery here, complete with industry complicity and backroom chicanery:
Mr Goddard uncovers a secret deal struck between the government and the UK commercial radio industry to force DAB radio upon the British public. In return for the radio industry promising to press ahead with DAB, the government bowed to pressure from the largest commercial group to amend the law so that its most profitable national FM radio licence could be renewed without a public auction.
Mr Goddard also exposes a wealth of inaccurate and distorted data published by radio industry lobbyists as part of their campaign to convince the government and consumers that take-up of DAB radio has been a success in the UK and overseas.
However, while the radio industry was assuring the government of its commitment to DAB as ‘the future of radio’, Grant Goddard’s book reveals that the largest commercial radio group was quietly closing its digital radio stations and selling off its investments in DAB radio licences.
• One member of the radio group sends along this thought about a leader in radio manufacturing, Bose:
Ibiquity is always trying to bring more auto and consumer electronics manufacturers into the HD fold, and they always brag when they snag a new one. Somehow Bose Corporation, which would be a real catch for them, has never been willing to come on board.
It’s easy to see why.
While some critics fault Bose products for being both overpriced and not necessarily the best performers in their categories, no one can deny that the build quality is very good and that Bose products are dependable. Consequently, the company has a well-earned reputation for standing behind its products on the rare occasions when trouble arises.
And Bose is not afraid of new technology as long it has real consumer appeal — and as long as it works. Bose was among the first to jump on the CD bandwagon by offering a version of its Wave radio with a built-in CD player soon after CD’s were introduced in the Eighties.
So if Bose hasn’t introduced a single HD receiver in the seven years since the FCC first authorized HD broadcasting, that clearly tells us what Bose thinks of HD radio!