All India Radio’s (AIR) FM news channel would finally go on air in the first week of September at the four metros Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkatta and Chennai. To begin with, the channel will have around 35 per cent news content with the remaining being infotainment programmes. The channel is expected to become 100 per cent news-oriented within the next six months.
To begin with, a special cell within AIR would market the channels. Prasar Bharati may outsource marketing activity to private players at a later date.
AIR has recently set up a resource centre to offer infrastructure support services to private players. It has signed up a MoU with Indira Gandhi National Open University to offer consultancy, operation and maintenance services for 40 FM educational channels, to be up and running over the next one year.
AIR is also planning to offer its infrastructure for hosting and maintenance of radio stations to private FM players.