Radio Data Systems

Last Updated on September 1, 2020

Radio Data Systems, RDS, is the standard mode of most vehicle radios and hi-fi radios on the market today.

VHF, FM radio broadcasts utilize RDS. Radio Data Systems also enable the broadcast of traffic reports along with the ability to display the channel info on the radio display.

RDS Development and Usage

radio data systems

Radio Data Systems was developed in Europe where it was first utilized. It was initially used in Germany for traffic information broadcasts in the FM range.

In 1974 the European Broadcasting Union decided to further develop the utilization of RDS to include more info along with automatic retuning of the radio receiver when outside the transmitters initial range.

The original format was combined with a Swedish paging system along with baseband coding that was created by the British Broadcasting Corporation with the Irish Radio culminating in the first complete RDS system in 1984.

RDS was enhanced in 1991 to include alternative frequencies and was then published under the CENELEC.

The US launched it’s RDS in 1992 which was dubbed RBDS. In 1992 the CENELEC updated RDS to include the traffic message channel with open data applications added in 1998 and in 2000 IEC standard 62106 was implemented world wide.

Radio Data Facilities and Features

  • Travel news
  • Enhanced Other Network (EON)
  • Autotuning
  • Instant Tuning

For more radio guides and tips read these articles:

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