HD Radio Share Soars

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HD Radio is finally hitting its stride in car radios and its developer, iBiquity has declared it’s reached a tipping point.

HD Radio, as a built-in feature, took an 18 percent share of car head units sold to dealers (for the top 20 radio models) in Q1 compared to only 3 percent last year. If you track the sell-through of car head units priced between $150 and $190, HD radio’s share was 25 percent in the first quarter, said iBiquity. It expects the share to keep climbing because Best Buy had not yet begun stocking many of the more popular radios/navi units with built-in HD Radio as of Q1.

Suppliers are also seeing more momentum. Kenwood’s Keith Lehmann says anecdotally, he’s seen a jump in HD Radio awareness and demand over the past year. “HD Radio is now an extremely viable feature on the sales floor. All things being equal on the floor in sub $200 radios, HD Radio adds a lot of value.” Consumers are only just now discovering that HD Radio offers extra channels, he added.

JVC was the first to put HD Radio on the motherboard of a car radio in 2007/2008 to bring the price of the feature down to a $20 to $30 premium at retail. iBiquity said big box retailers saw those radios perform well and started asking other suppliers to do the same. “In 2009 you had JVC, high end Kenwood, and Dual and Audiovox radios with HD Radio [built-in]. Now we have Sony, Pioneer and it’s been expanded in Kenwood’s line,” said a spokesman.

The feature is also going into more cars. Ford announced it would offer HD Radio with iTunes Tagging back in January.

iBiquity COO Jeff Jury, claimed in a press statement, “HD Radio Technology has reached critical mass.”

To date, 12 auto brands offer HD Radio car radios including BMW, Ford, Jaguar, Lincoln, Mercedes, MINI, Volvo, Hyundai, Scion, Land Rover, Volkswagen, and Rolls Royce. Audi, Kia and Mercury will also launch new models that include HD Radio for the first time in 2010.

Source: CEoutlook

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  1. What crap – Three years ago iBiquity was touting the same song. Struble and company must be getting tired of trying to exploit the same stuff over and over.

  2. What a load of hooey. This is typical iBiquity swag to make it seem like “HD radio” is taking off. It’s going nowhere fast — or slow. For the first time in history, public airwaves are in the hands of a monopoly, and it’s trying to foist this scam off on an American public that could care less — even if its claims were true, which they are not. Yeah, it’s ready to tip — into oblivion. See keeppublicradiopublic.com and MANY other sites on this ripoff. It’s reached critical mass like a cowpie does in yonder pasture…

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