Radio switchover to leave millions indifferent

Experts have today warned that millions of analogue radio owners across the UK will experience feelings of indifference in five years’ time, due to the upcoming switchover to digital radio, which is set to take place in 2015.

It seems that the majority of the general public are either unaware of the plan or not in the remotest bit bothered, as the switchover was originally announced several years ago. It is feared that the wave of indifference caused by analogue radios no longer working could severely damage the UK’s economic recovery.

A spokesman for Solent Sound, home of Solent’s greatest music variety, believes the move will signal the death knell for many of the country’s regional commercial radio stations: “I think it will be a gradual death, as the public will slowly begin to realise they are unable to receive AM and FM stations in the car on their way to work. Most of them will shrug and either put on a CD or switch off the radio and start a bit of idle chit-chat with their fellow passengers. A small number of them will initially miss having some background noise to pass the journey, but eventually will occupy that void by having actual proper thoughts or by humming tunes to themselves.”

Peter Ian, a presenter on Power FM, Wolverhampton’s best music mix, agrees with this viewpoint, but stresses the need for local radio stations to adopt a proactive approach to stem the flow of listeners: “At the end of the day, local radio is there to serve the needs of its advertisers, so stations will need to bear this in mind, come 2015. What we’re planning to do is to maybe run a competition whereby listeners have to spot a particular Power FM car sticker and phone in with the vehicle’s registration. The winner would then receive a low-end digital radio.”

Car sticker phone-ins have formed the backbone on regional commercial radio for over 20 years, and are seen as a vital tool by many local stations in the battle for survival post-switchover. Steve Peake, who hosts Steve Peake’s Morning Wake-Up, in association with Parker’s Ford – Northampton’s most trusted and reliable Ford dealership offering unrivalled motoring comfort at unbeatable low prices, open Monday to Friday from 9am until 6pm and 1pm on Saturdays – take a test drive today, on Northampton Sound 96.4FM, home of the best music mix variety throughout the East Midlands, believes that car-sticker-spotting may not ultimately be enough to save many stations across the UK: “The problem will come as soon as listeners start winning these DAB radios – they’ll scan about for a few minutes and find that there’s, ironically, much more music variety than they’re used to and either their head will implode or they will simply start listening to other stations.”

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