On BBC Radio 2, Graham Norton has just announced BBC Radio 2 Eurovision, a four-day pop-up DAB Digital Radio station to celebrate the international music competition.
I think this is a great idea and something the BBC should do more of.
Why do I say that? Well, it makes use of existing technology as DAB multiplexes can be flexed to add (or remove) stations really easily. It’s also a technology that nearly half of UK households have, so lots of people can access it. It’s also a great way to sell a benefit of digital radio – choice. For those who don’t have a DAB Radio, they’ll also be able to tune in online and through mobile too.
It’s also (relatively) cheap to do. The BBC have lots of infrastructure for covering the main song contest, people out there etc, so it’s making better use of their resources – by producing even more content for licence fee payers.
And… it’s short-term. Four days is enough to provide value, but not too much that it’s providing even more licence-fee competition for us poor commercial broadcasters.
Hopefully it will also popularise the notion of pop-up stations – there’s been quite a few all ready and it’s something (with MuxCo) that we’re encouraging people to do too.
More radio, catering for people’s tastes and interests has got to be a good thing for our industry and our product.
It starts on Thursday 8th May.