In its move to establish DAB as the sole platform for UK radio, the government has set the target of 2015 as the preferred date to swith off the analogue signal, thus rendering millions of analogue radios unusable in the UK. This decision, and the objective of switching off the analogue signal should be dropped.

Why is this idea important?

Many millions of traditional analogue radio sets are owned and enjoyed by UK households. These sets are cheap to buy and more energy-efficient than DAB sets. Analogue sets are lighter and lend themselves more to portability due to their lower consumption of battery power. Old, perfectly serviceable sets are ideal for outside use, due their cheapness and relative unattractiveness to theives.

If the decision to phase out analogue sets were to proceed, millions of sets will be scrapped which is wasteful and environmentally damaging. The decision will be costly to households. Any new sets purchased will benefit overseas manufacturers rather than British firms. Finally, all cars currently fitted with analogue radios will require ugly and expensive retro-fit solutions.

This is an unpopular and unnecessary decision. A reversal of current policy would be greeted as a triumph of common sense by a government that is in touch with public opinion.

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