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Satellite Radios Must Add HD Radio Says New Bill

9/29/2008 02:23:00 PM Eastern

Washington — All satellite radios should be required to provide HD Radio, according to a new bill proposed by Congressman Edward Markey (D-Mass.).

Even while the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is conducting a review on the topic, Markey submitted a bill on Saturday stating that all satellite radios that offer AM/FM radio are required to offer digital radio.

The bill was submitted to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, and it is co-sponsored by Reps. Lee Terry (R-Neb.), Charlie Gonzalez (D-Texas), Greg Walden (R-Ore.), Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) and Dan Burton (R-Ind.).

The National Associatin of Broadcasters (NAB) president and CEO David Rehr said, "NAB salutes the leadership of Chairman Markey and a bipartisan group of lawmakers for sponsoring this important bill that will boost the integration of HD Radio in satellite radio receivers, including those installed in automobiles."

Toyota and General Motors oppose the integration of HD Radio in satellite radios, and told the FCC in the recent past that this would represent "an unprecedented requirement regulating the choice of entertainment technologies in an automotive environment."

As part of its decision to approve the Sirius-XM merger in July, the FCC said it would begin an inquiry 30 days after the merger’s completion, into whether satellite radios should be required to include HD Radio chips.

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