TORONTO, Jan. 17, 2014 /CNW/ - January 14th, 2014 will be etched as a historic day for the Canadian Multicultural Radio. In the presence of a member of the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunication Commission and an executive of Ibiquity Digital Corporation, CMR launched Canada's first HD additional programming in Tamil at 4pm on Tuesday. January 14th, fittingly was, "Thai Pongal", a Tamil festival that signifies gratitude for what may have come and hopes for bountiful more to come; celebrated as the harvest festival. This experimental service is now live on 101.3 FM HD2.
Commissioner Raj Shoan, a full-time member of the Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunication Commission, designated for the Ontario region, officially launched the programming on-air. Speaking at the ceremony, the commissioner said, "HD Radio offers interesting possibilities for the entire Canadian Radio broadcasting industry.
"On the one hand, it enables radio stations such as 101.3 FM to offer listeners new features including higher quality sound, more programming and new information such as the artist, song title or traffic information [on the screens of the radio receivers] and on the other hand, it makes better use of the radio spectrum through the use of separate channels on the same frequency.
Speaking of CMR's move to pioneer the testing of the HD technology with dedicated programming, Commissioner Shoan said, "With the launch of its Hybrid Digital Radio programming the Canadian Multicultural Radio is beginning an exciting yearlong experiment with innovative technology.
"CMR's experiment with HD Radio will enable the CRTC to assess to what extent Canadians may gravitate towards this new technology and whether regulation should be developed to facilitate its possible adoption by other radio broadcasters."
Speaking at the event, Mr. Peter Brady, the Vice President of Marketing for Ibiquity Digital Corporation, the patent owners of HD Radio technology stated that the advent of HD Radio technology in Canada was long coming and that with CMR's bold move to adopt the technology in a vibrant market such as Toronto only makes the future brighter for HD Radio in Canada. He further said "Ibiquity is sincerely grateful for what [CMR] has done, [and] for the investment you have made. It is no small achievement to do what you have done."
Apart from one other station in Ontario that tested its HD capabilities, CMR is the only station in Canada to have adopted this technology.
Mr. Stanislaus Antony, the Chairman and CEO of CMR remarked "My team and I wanted to mark 2014, our 10th year of broadcast, with something special, innovative and trendsetting. That's when we boldly decided to give HD Radio technology a shot.
"It is a very proud moment for all us here at CMR! To think that out of some 675 commercial radio stations operating in Canada, CMR is the first to launch additional HD programming gives me immense pride. We are gathered here today to mark this day in history."
"If it succeeds, CMR will open a world of possibilities both for itself and the radio industry as a whole" said the CRTC Commissioner in his final remarks and congratulated the station.
The CRTC approved CMR's request to experiment with HD Radio Technology to its fullest capability in the summer of 2013. In addition to the 24 hour Tamil service launch on HD2, the station intends to launch Hindi and Urdu services combined on HD3 and Punjabi service on HD4. The station has also offered to help the CRTC with its findings on how HD Radio technology unfolds in its service market.
Canadian Multicultural Radio (CMR) operates on 101.3 FM in Toronto. It serves in 25 languages to over 20 ethnic communities. Located at 306 Rexdale Blvd, CMR has been operating for 10 years. The CRTC call name for CMR is CJSA FM.
SOURCE Canadian Multicultural Radio
Image with caption: "CRTC Commissioner Raj Shoan ceremonially inaugurating Canada's first HD Radio Additional programing service (CNW Group/Canadian Multicultural Radio)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140117_C9634_PHOTO_EN_35681.jpg
Image with caption: " Peter Brady, VP Brand Management -Ibiquity Digital Corporation speaking at the HD launch Ceremony (CNW Group/Canadian Multicultural Radio)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140117_C9634_PHOTO_EN_35682.jpg
Image with caption: "Ragavan Paranchothy, Dir. Of Public Relations of CMR, Commission Raj Shoan, Stan Antony, Chairman & CEO of CMR touring CMR's facilities. (CNW Group/Canadian Multicultural Radio)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20140117_C9634_PHOTO_EN_35683.jpg