Radio: FM's Future

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FM (Frequency Modulation), radio's mysterious baby, was lifted last week out of its swaddling clothes. After ten months of study, the Federal Communications Commission decided that FM's postwar transmission band should be hiked from its present 42-to-50 megacycles up to 88-to-106. This change. FCC said, meant that FM would have ample space to expand and less interference, which should make its high fidelity and staticless reception even better.

Big experimenters like General Electric and RCA, as well as some FM manufacturers whose stake is pegged in the present wave bands, had opposed FCC. Many complained that equipment would be made obsolete, feared that FM's development would be set back anywhere from one to five years. FCC countered that converters, at about $10 apiece, would make old sets workable, declared that future interference would have brought about the move anyhow. To all concerned, any decision at all was a relief.