Too soon to switch off analogue radio
Later today the House of Lords Communications Committee will warn against turning off analogue radio, as part of the digital switch over, in 2015. They’re right to say we’re not ready. Unlike television, old analogue radios cannot be easily converted to digital and, to manufacturers and retailers shame, a great many analogue radios are still for sale.
2015 doesn’t seem that far away. I’d expect a radio bought today to still be in use five years from now and digital radio will not be fitted as standard in all new cars until 2013, which is crazy.
The committee has found that while the benefits of the TV switch over were well understood — and that does appear to have gone remarkably well — the same is not true radio. A scrappage scheme for radios is proposed, which would be a good idea.
Analogue radio will be switched off. The space it takes on the spectrum will be needed for ever hungry digital services, but it’s unrealistic to do that until at least five years have elapsed from the last analogue radio’s sale.