back to article Ford in reverse gear over AM radio removal after Congress threatens action

In the wake of a potential congressional mandate, one automaker is reversing course and adding the AM radio dial back to its dashboards. Ford Motor Company announced the move through its CEO Jim Farley in a tweet yesterday in which he acknowledged the airing of a bill [PDF] in the US Senate last week that would require AM …

  1. Jim Mitchell
    Boffin

    I'm confused, if Ford's EV implementation interferes with AM radio broadcasts or reception, this would seem to be an FCC issue.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Two different issues.

      One's a supposed "public safety" thing. The other is RF interference that should have already been addressed, but hasn't.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
        Pirate

        There seems to be a pattern in US of ignoring the regulations and then taking years to get them properly enforced later, if ever. The Starlink/mobile in-fill capability currently being talked about, DISH networks TV shenanigans, the Aircraft GPS/5G debacle. And that's just the stuff I can remember from El Reg coverage. There was even a story on BBC radio yesterday of Governor(??) in the US who dropped his phone in a resevoir while taking a selfy and ordered it drained so he could get is phone back. It was fucked, of course, a bit like his sense of entitlement and authority!

      2. Kurgan Silver badge

        Poor RF compatibiliy is the issue here

        EV inverters generate a lot of RF noise and of course making them less noisy is a cost. It happens that AM frequencies (lower than FM broadcast) and also the modulation method itself is more sensitive to this RF noise, so AM radio reception will be really poor when a lot of EV cars are out there. Basically, they are jamming themselves (and everyone else around them, too). This is why it's easier to remove AM radio from those cars instead of fixing the noisy inverters. And fuck the people who actually uses any radio service that works in the sub-30 MHz band (AM broadcast, some emergency services, ham radio operators, etc). We are already deafened by chinese crap switching power supplies and phone chargers, chinese crap LED lamps, chinese crap solar panel inverters, and now chinese crap EV inverters are coming, too.

    2. doublelayer Silver badge

      It's not interfering with others' use, at least not beyond limits. It interferes more with the internal components that would be receiving it, because they didn't want to add the shielding. I've experienced this with a cheap radio I saw which could be recharged by USB, but if you plugged it in and tried to listen to AM signals, they would be much harder to hear over the internal noise. That didn't affect another radio that was next to it, just the specific unit itself, because the manufacturer had not shielded the components involved.

      The FCC would get involved if the equipment was causing problems for others, but it's not their job to make sure that something that receives signals is built in a good way. They are not responsible for making auto manufacturers include that component or build it well.

      1. david 12 Silver badge

        it's not their job to make sure that something that receives signals is built in a good way.

        I understand what you mean, but badly put: the FCC is responsible for noise immunity in things that receive signals, and also in things that don't receive signals.

        The mandated noise tests test if a device is immune from external noise, or emits external noise.

        1. doublelayer Silver badge

          I think you probably understand my point, but in case others didn't, I'll try rephrasing it here. If somebody builds a device so badly that it's interfering with other devices' attempts to receive signals, the FCC will regulate it. If it's built in such a way that it can't receive signals well itself but that doesn't affect other devices, not the FCC's problem. If it could receive some type of signal but the manufacturer decided it won't, also not the FCC's problem. The cars concerned are in categories 2 and 3, but not 1. Hence, the FCC doesn't care.

          1. Martin an gof Silver badge

            built in such a way that it can't receive signals well itself but that doesn't affect other devices, not the FCC's problem

            Are you sure about that? All the FCC declarations of conformity I've seen contain wording along the lines of:

            "Must not generate interference and must not malfunction on reception of interference"

            It sounds as if the manufacturers are claiming the radios are susceptible to interference from the car's systems (not internally from a badly-built radio), and with the massive amount of 'inverter'-driven power going to the motor(s) I can well believe that.

            I can also believe that it is a fairly easy-to-solve problem. It's just a bit more convoluted than fitting a suppressor to the distributor in a conventional petrol engine.

            M.

            1. Wellyboot Silver badge

              Like all contracts, the wording hides the meaning. The cars don't generate enough interference to affect external radios or malfunction on reception so the FCC is not interested.

              The fact that in car AM reception may be completely pants while driving is a separate issue that the manufacturers simply didn't want to address.

              Another question that springs to mind is will the interference affect any medical devices being carried inside the vehicle (especially those inside a passenger), probably not but has this been checked?

              1. doublelayer Silver badge

                I don't know, but it is almost certain that it has been checked and been found acceptable. The FCC and many other national regulators do regulate the levels of interference external to the device, which would include any equipment operating inside the car. The interference is much higher in stuff attached to the circuits of the car than in something with an air gap from those circuits, so they could have done some shielding between the electronics and the user which they didn't do between the different parts of the circuit.

            2. doublelayer Silver badge

              Usually, the wording is "must accept interference". However, they mean that the interference shouldn't make it catch fire or otherwise break, not that you should be able to listen to radio clearly through interference. If you have a really tiny WiFi antenna and a poor signal processor, then you will have bad WiFi performance unless the signal is incredibly clear, but unless it's built in such a way that this bad environment will burn something out, the FCC doesn't get involved.

          2. gnwiii

            FCC rules won’t ensure that AM radios in cars will actually be useful in remote areas or when disasters that bring down local FM and cellular services. The organizations that are expected to provide information during emergencies have been irresponsible by not making and enforcing robust requirements to supply vital information during disasters.

  2. YetAnotherXyzzy

    I'm so glad that the U.S. Congress has successfully solved all major problems and therefore has time for this.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Considering how much time the lazy bastards waste on grade-school name calling, actually getting ANY legislation addressed and passed is an improvement.

    2. Muznskwirl

      Not sure why you’re being downvoted…considering the debt ceiling debacle, you make a valid point.

      Grew up hearing, “this is a test of the emergency broadcast system, in the event of a real emergency…”

      In the event of a real emergency, we didn’t hear a thing, looking at you 9/11…

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        The EBS is generally local actual emergencies only. Despite the eventual nationwide effect, the emergency in NYC didn't impact people outside NYC directly, so... not surprised it didn't get used in most places. Were you in NYC at the time?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          It wasn't really the kind of disaster that required notifying anyone who wasn't in one of those buildings or a neighboring one.

          1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            At least until they identified the one that hit the Pentagon and the one that crashed in Pennsylvania thanks to the passengers trying to take it back and, at that specific time, potentially more that no one yet knew about, so yeah, it affected a bit more than just those few buildings. It took quite some while to cancel all flights and get them grounded so it could indeed have been reasonable to use the EBS for a much wider area if not nationally. I'd certainly not have held it against anyone who authorised its use on that day, and I don't even live in the US.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          The indirect effect of grounding all flights was pretty significant, in my opinion.

          (Though I wouldn't know first-hand because I wasn't trying to travel on or near that day.)

          Though I'll admit that EBS wouldn't have helped. The FAA even had to shut down the airport version of CNN (no air-incident news) so travelers wouldn't get spooked about more (potential) hijackings. It would have been nice to tell them WHY flights were grounded, but there was no possible way to do so without raising fears and suspicions.

    3. Michael Strorm Silver badge

      Government promises to look into littering problem, still no cure for cancer

      Whatever one's opinion on this particular case- and those pushing for it- this is the same old fallacious argument that a government can be criticised for addressing a supposedly minor issue while a major one remains unresolved.

      In other words, the idea that they can- or should- only work on one thing at a time, which is obvious nonsense when it's stated like that.

      1. YetAnotherXyzzy

        Re: Government promises to look into littering problem, still no cure for cancer

        I was wondering why my prior comment got so many downvotes, and I thank you for taking a moment to give a good reason why. Have an upvote.

        My snarky and laconic earlier comment did indeed give that impression, and I agree with your reply. What I meant (but didn't bother to actually state) was something else however: that in my opinion this isn't a minor issue but rather a non-issue entirely. Automobiles are transportation devices. They can be rightly expected to have features relevant to their purpose, and it is valid to legislate such features if necessary (seat belts, ABS brakes, etc). What doesn't make so much sense is to legislate features that, however useful, aren't central to a vehicle's purpose.

        As an example, my truck has a small box with just-in-case stuff in it. There's a liter of water, some non-perishable food, a headlamp, duct tape, a knife...you get the idea. Those are things I added myself; the factory rightly didn't include them, no one mandates them, and I won't write my Congresswoman if I find out that you don't carry them. I simply happen to think that those things make sense for me. If someone thinks having an AM radio makes sense for them, fine, carry one, what's the problem? The mentality of "I think it might be useful for some people sometimes, so let's mandate it for everyone all the time" is well intentioned but sometimes gets silly.

        1. My other car WAS an IAV Stryker

          Re: Government promises to look into littering problem, still no cure for cancer

          How I love the El Reg forums. Kudos to you for your graceful (and refreshing) response to the criticism against your original post -- here's *your* upvote.

          (Keep the positive vibes going, people! Upvotes for everyone!)

  3. jake Silver badge

    The only question remaining is ...

    ... WTF don't cell phones have an AM receiver[0] built in?

    Shirley you're more likely to have a phone than a car at arm's reach in an emergency, even here in the car-crazy United States.

    Yes, I know, the manufacturers can't charge for each individual song or over-the-air broadcast ... greedy bastards.

    [0] May as well throw in FM, as well ... both come together on a single die package these days.

    1. Spamfast

      Re: The only question remaining is ...

      WTF don't cell phones have an AM receiver[0] built in?

      AM is no longer used in many parts of the world. Even FM has been shut down in some countries such as Norway in favour of DAB+.

      I'd like to see mobiles (aka cell phones or Handys) have SDRs capable of AM, FM & DAB+ and the rest. Mine - a few years old - still has an FM radio but that might be useless if the UK government takes the backhanders from certain parties and follows Norway.

      1. Piro Silver badge

        Re: The only question remaining is ...

        Better to follow the example of their neighbouring Finland instead, where they had a DAB switchoff in 2005.

        There are a fair few that have switched off DAB: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_Audio_Broadcasting#Countries_where_FM_to_DAB(+)_radio_transition_is_cancelled/postponed

        1. Michael Strorm Silver badge

          Yesterday's technology, yesterday's battle

          DAB in the UK has been around for circa twenty years and it's never come close to FM's usage. If DAB hasn't happened by now, it never will. (*)

          The intention was to switch over completely at some point, but it's pretty obvious that would have happened long ago if adoption of DAB (and abandonment of FM) had gone as planned. I looked this up and apparently they've changed the criteria for the "digital switchover" from being based solely on DAB adoption to being based on *any* "digital" listening (e.g. smartphones, etc.)

          That in itself is an acknowledgement of DAB's failure, not to mention a sign of the fact that listening methods have fundamentally changed and that DAB has been fighting so long for adoption that it's been rendered yesterday's battle regardless.

          That said, it's better than in Ireland where DAB was apparently an utter flop and has now been withdrawn.

          (*) In fact, because its adoption has been so slow and because technology has moved on in that time (DAB being essentially early 90s tech), the plan from Ofcom was that services should move to its far more modern and efficient successor, DAB+, instead.

          That's a good idea, since the silver lining of DAB's slow adoption is that effectively abandoning older DAB-only sets is less likely to be a big deal. Except that many cheaper DAB sets *still* being sold in the UK today don't support DAB+ and the government hasn't mandated otherwise.

          In other words, typical.

          1. JimboSmith Silver badge

            Re: Yesterday's technology, yesterday's battle

            The intention was to switch over completely at some point, but it's pretty obvious that would have happened long ago if adoption of DAB (and abandonment of FM) had gone as planned. I looked this up and apparently they've changed the criteria for the "digital switchover" from being based solely on DAB adoption to being based on *any* "digital" listening (e.g. smartphones, etc.)

            There hasn’t been an intention to kill off FM broadcasts in this country (UK) for quite some time. I worked for a commercial broadcaster and there was for a very short period of time a suggestion that FM would be completely replaced by DAB. Probably some government minister thought that the broadcast bit of the FM spectrum could be sold off. Then someone realised that there isn’t much if any use for these airwaves other than broadcasting and international agreements prevent it. So a new idea was born, see below. (Sounds positively Nadine Dorries like but it wasn’t her) This was well before DAB was ever launched on the public and I don’t recall anything firm policy wise ever being released about it.

            This involves the major broadcasters, Bauer, BBC, Nation Broadcasting, OXIS Media Ltd etc. moving from FM onto DAB. The FM frequencies of existing smaller/community stations and newly licensed community stations would be what was left or added to the FM band, plus the pirates. It was made a digital switchover as opposed to DAB when it became apparent that technology was overtaking DAB and that people were listening on-line, through their TV’s etc. (I left before smart speakers became a thing). Problem is DAB sets didn’t sell fast enough and tricks like not counting items that were sold with an fm radio but weren’t an actual radio, (think mobile phones was the big one but there were others) FM sales were still fairly robust. So remove the digital tuning analogue radios and encourage people to get a DAB. For the amount of money spent on DAB we could have redone the FM network of transmitters and achieved better coverage and performance.

      2. vtcodger Silver badge

        Re: The only question remaining is ...

        "AM is no longer used in many parts of the world."

        OTOH, there are many parts of the world where AM radio is the only radio signal available. The medium-wave frequencies used by AM (530-1700KHz) tend to hug the Earth in daylight and reflect off the ionosphere at night. The highest powered stations can be heard 100s of km distant in daytime, and over much of North America at night. Higher frequency broadcasts, including FM, usually go more or less directly off into space. As a result, travelers in the US west, and along much of the US Canadian border have little or no radio option other than weak noisy signals from AM transmitters hundreds of km away. Same is true of cell phones BTW. Don't assume that just because it's the 21st Century you'll have a cell phone signal everywhere in Vermont or Northern New York -- at least not without climbing a hill and holding the phone just right.

        1. IglooDame

          Re: The only question remaining is ...

          Indeed. In driving from Anchorage to Fairbanks (Alaska), most of the drive I could hit "seek" on my FM radio and it would silently cycle through the spectrum until I turned it off again. This was about 25yrs ago, but I can't imagine anyone's fired up any new FM radio stations along the way since then.

          1. Neil 44

            Re: The only question remaining is ...

            I seem to remember (also many years ago) driving Anchorage to (almost - got to North Pole!) Fairbanks and could hit seek and not finding any AM stations either!!

        2. NXM Silver badge

          ionosphere

          Not only AM.

          More than once, on very cold nights, I've experienced reception from two difference FM stations in poor reception areas in Cumbria on the same frequency.

          Tuning across the dial and using the station ID text, it turned out I could hear several Italian stations from hundreds of miles away.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The only question remaining is ...

      WTF don't cell phones have an AM receiver[0] built in?

      Aside from the demand for one, rhe size of the ferrite bar used as an antenna for MW would probably be a dealbreaker here. Most consumers and cell phone manufacturers are looking at slimmer phones. A ferrite bar would ruin that.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The only question remaining is ...

        Is that a ferrite bar in your pocket,, or are you just pleased to see me?

      2. Mongrel

        Re: The only question remaining is ...

        Last phone I saw that had a required wired headphones so it could use them as an aerial... Oh....

      3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: The only question remaining is ...

        A ferrite bar would ruin that.

        You say that like it's a bad thing.

        Slimmer phones, like slimmer bezels, are a Stupid Designer Trick. Regulation that forced some function back in at the expensive of idiotic non-features would be fine with me.

    3. Duncan Macdonald

      Re: The only question remaining is ...

      Many smartphones have FM reception capability when used with plug in headphones - using the headphone lead as the FM antenna. Unfortunately while the length of a headphone lead is a reasonable match for the FM frequency band it is a very poor match for the AM frequency band. (FM around 100MHz AM around 1MHz). Very good signal processing would be required to get good audio from an AM antenna that was under 1m in length unless very close to the transmitter. The aerials inside a smartphone are so small that they are a VERY BAD match to the AM frequency band which would result in a very weak signal for the electronics.

    4. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: The only question remaining is ...

      No, they don't (I'm sure somewhere someone has built one, but they aren't common and never were). That's for perfectly valid technical reasons. It's not the same as including an FM receiver, which is much simpler to build in a way that works with the rest of the design, and even some phones that have that don't have great reception there either. The antennas typically used for those signals would make a phone a lot bulkier, and even if you're fine with that, most people don't want that in return for a band they may not use, so manufacturers will have trouble convincing people to buy that over one that leaves it out.

  4. JimboSmith Silver badge

    Oddly we have tried to get DAB selling faster in this country by killing off sales of analogue only radios with digital tuning on the high street. Yes you can still buy cheap analogue radios that do AM and FM but they don’t have the convenience of digital tuning. Online it’s a bit better and you can get simple radios incorporating digital tuning and expensive advanced ones. Less radios sold without AM supposedly means less listeners to AM and we can then ditch that band in the UK.

    Years ago I needed a radio for travelling abroad and went into my local retailer (which rhymes with Murray’s) only because I was passing one. I asked the sales person if she had any radios that did shortwave and had digital tuning. The girl I was talking to was very keen to help me buy a radio but was a little bit lacking in knowledge. Yes she showed me radios but only two of them had any AM component at all and those lacked digital tuning. She had never heard of shortwave and I educated her on the different methods of radio broadcast. She was interested in case anyone came in again asking the same questions as me. I suppose I wasn’t expecting her to know or them to sell what I was after.

    Then I tried Peter Jones who used to have a better range and more knowledgable sales staff. They no longer did radios with shortwave or even AM and the bloke there told me that I could just use DAB. When I pointed out that I’d said I was hoping to use it whilst travelling in North America he told me DAB is used in many countries. Yep I said except North America doesn’t use DAB they use IBOC. I explained that I need at least AM as the sports (like baseball) are mostly broadcast on MW.

    1. fromxyzzy

      Actually, we don't even use IBOC. It was abandoned about ten years ago.

      It had virtually no real market or device penetration anyway.

      1. Lennart Sorensen

        Seems alive and well to me. I see quite a few "HD Radio" stations in the Toronto area at least, with multiple channels on a single frequency to pick from. The radio in my 2012 Prius V has no problem using it.

    2. Martin an gof Silver badge

      ditch that band in the UK

      As I have often wondered before, for what purpose?

      AM is a simple and efficient broadcast technology. Shutting down the entire MW band releases (in Europe) about 1MHz of spectrum (c550kHz - c1600kHz) which isn't much use for anything else, especially given its propagation characteristics. I used to work at a radio station in South Wales with two, 200W AM transmitters. During the day each had a good coverage over perhaps a 20 mile radius and got in to 'corners' our 600W and 2kW FM transmitters struggled to reach. During the night, maybe 5 mile decent radius and reception reports coming in from Italy, Germany, Sweden etc.

      Far better to start transitioning to something like DRM - digial radio squeezed in to the typical 9kHz or 10kHz slot allocated to AM stations. Let them live alongside each other.

      Longwave is even less re-usable I'd think. Threre is only about 100kHz (c150kHz - c250kHz) allocated there and its characteristics mean that one single transmitter near Birmingham covers nearly all the UK (there is a second up North IIRC) and a good chunk of Europe!

      Even shutting down FM doesn't clear much. 88MHz - 108MHz is the same bandwidth as a single WiFi channel, or a little more than two (8MHz) TV channels - might be useful for expanding basic telephony services to the wilds of the Scottish highlands using a very small number of transmitters, except as previously mentioned for the difficulty making efficient aerials for 100MHz fit inside a modern smartphone.

      M.

  5. Spamfast
    FAIL

    Rivian, meanwhile, told us it "offers free access to AM and FM radio services in all Rivian consumer vehicles that come standard in each vehicle. AM radio service from local and national stations is provided via digital radio platforms (thus ensuring enhanced audio quality.)"

    I think they've rather missed the point there. It's not the content that needs to be available, it's the technology. In the event of a problem, AM transmitters may well still be broadcasting when wireless Internet ones have been taken down.

    1. david 12 Silver badge

      Good catch. I notice that several posters here had followed the lead from the article and thought that AM meant Amplitude Modulated, rather than "AM broadcast license".

      But wrong in the detail. The Digital Broadcast stations in the USA are not "Internet Radio", they broadcast from the same locations using the same power supply, and they carry the mandated public broadcast messages.

      What I don't know about is range. Can someone tell us if the US digital broadcast system has same/better/worse coverage than the AM broadcast technology?

      1. Not Yb Bronze badge

        Most radios in the US don't offer digital broadcast reception (aka HD Radio here). It never really caught on, and our car manufacturers mostly don't bother putting it in standard models. (Yes, really)

        Several stations broadcast HD Radio, though receivers are not particularly common. Common house FM receivers don't receive HD radio either.

        A bit sad, really, all those bits flying around where no one will ever read them.

        1. fromxyzzy

          It's effectively failed and been abandoned, as exemplified here: http://topazdesigns.com/iboc/station-list.html

          It's just old fashioned AM and FM in the US, if you want more you get satellite or an internet connection via your phone.

      2. Chris Evans

        'Good catch. I notice that several posters here had followed the lead from the article and thought that AM meant Amplitude Modulated, rather than "AM broadcast license".'

        I don't understand what that means and googling hasn't helped. Please elucidate.

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          I think it’s about transmitting in the medium wave band, for which broadcasters use amplitude modulation signals rather than frequency modulation.

    2. Not Yb Bronze badge

      If the only stations that still work are broadcasting in AM, is it worth surviving any more?

      There's an extreme amount of infrastructure that would have to be gone to keep FM stations off the air.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        That's the strawest of men you have there.

        There may be occasions where someone is within range of an AM station, but not of an FM station, and important information is being broadcast.

        It doesn't have to be "no FM ever again, anywhere".

    3. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

      AM is significantly lower frequency than phone services which means the range from the transmitter because smaller waves carry more data but have less range.

      1. CowHorseFrog Silver badge

        Amazing how many morons dont understand the basics of radio waves and range and yet they down vote me.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I like AM radio

    But PM radio sucks.

  7. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    Times change

    A long time ago, I could see that AM radio would give you the best performance on a limited budget or an improvised setup. You could go to any appliance repair shop and build a transmitter or receiver from spare parts. You could even make a Morse code transmitter from hardware in a pub. It could serve for emergency communications in a small town.

    I doubt that's true today. You don't see many electronic components these days that can be soldered together free-hand, and they're definitely not at the appliance repair shop. Most people are living in cities far too big to gather around The Professor's radio made from shipwreck bits and coconuts. There are working radios and transmitters lying around all over the place. Now it's a matter of selecting the band. 1 MHz AM is probably the worst out of a list of 27 MHz CB, 100 Mhz FM, 600-700 MHz cellular, 900 MHz walkie-talkie, and even 800 MHz DTV. Even "good" modern AM radios usually don't burden consumers with a full-size bar/loop/wire antenna.

    Plenty of people still have long-range ham radio kits. There must be 10 houses in walking distance with a massive Yagi on a hand-crank telescoping tower.

  8. Downeaster

    Glad to Keep AM Questions about the Digital Radio

    I am glad that we are still keeping AM Radios in cars in the USA. AM radio stations in the US are getting fewer but the signals still can travel quite far. Some of our "clear channel" or 50,000 watt stations can be heard across several states at night. They are a good source of news and information especially some of the "all news" stations. I always wondered how in the UK and Europe how well the digital radio signals travel and how well they are vulnerable to interference or in losing signal. Here in the US when we switched from analog to digital broadcast TV, stations that we used to get a snowy analog picture on with decent sound became blocky and unwatchable due to the watching them from far away from the transmitter. This was a problem especially in rural areas. We went to not being able to get any over the air tv signal. I am wondering if digital radio in Europe was similar.

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: Glad to Keep AM Questions about the Digital Radio

      @Downeaster

      I'm in a semi rural bit of UK & DAB radio reception is just a joke. Drive around in the car and even the BBC DAB stations fail totally or just work intermittently.

      It's not just down to potentially poor car antenna / interference issues from car itself - we have a DAB portable radio which suffers the same problems in house and garden.

    2. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      Re: Glad to Keep AM Questions about the Digital Radio

      The UK is relatively small so we the number of transmitters required isn't excessive. And populations are highly concentrated in urban areas we can get >~90% population coverage while leaving only theoretical extant signals in the rural wilds.

    3. simonlb Silver badge
      Stop

      Re: Glad to Keep AM Questions about the Digital Radio

      ...and heard back from BMW, which told us it would make a decision if and when the bill is passed

      Which loosely means, if the bill passes they will enable it in your vehicle once you have paid the monthly subscription for it.

    4. Stork

      Re: Glad to Keep AM Questions about the Digital Radio

      In Portugal, FM radio is alive & well. Not seen any sign of DAB, but haven't looked.

      TV went digital some years back, the quality became so atrocious we got cable - and satellite for the rentals.

    5. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: Glad to Keep AM Questions about the Digital Radio

      I have strong digital TV and strong DAB signal and use them both extensively. I’m able to get perfect local radio in my from my home town which would be out of range for FM but because they are in an ensemble that is broadcast across a wider area, I get to hear it.

  9. bernmeister

    Does it really happen.

    In all these comments and discussions it has been assumed that AM reception in EVs is seriously degraded by inverter noise. No doubt it will be there but has anybody experienced this and how bad is it?

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