Columbia, MD: iBiquity Digital, the sole federally approved licensor of digital radio technology, has hired Hass MS&L to raise the profile of digital radio among automakers and consumers.
Digital-radio technology will enable traditional broadcast radio stations to offer sound quality comparable to satellite radio. It also allows streaming of additional text information, such as traffic reports, over radio bands.
IBiquity wants to convince automakers to start offering digital radios in their vehicles.
The company faces an uphill battle, however, as most automakers have trended toward replacing AM/FM radios in vehicles with satellite services XM or Sirius.
To date, 2,500 of the country's 13,000 commercial stations have agreed to switch to digital, said Vicki Stearn, iBiquity's director of marketing communications.
Hass was brought in to "let automakers know how quickly this is happening," she said.
IBiquity licenses use of its technology, which it calls HD Radio, to chip makers, radio makers, and operators of radio stations.