Many car radios display text from a radio station showing the name of the song, artist, station, etc. How does this text so often end up getting scrambled, combined, or otherwise messed up when displaying in your car?


For an example of what I mean: this morning, my radio was on when I was in my car. One of the songs was “Survivor” by Zach Williams, and the rolling text display is supposed to indicate that, but it often displayed weird combinations of those same letters – like “Surviams” or something like that. Similarly, on a Lauren Daigle song, it called her Dauren on one of the text cycles. I honestly thought it was hilarious, but now I’m curious…why does that happen?

In: Technology

This data is sent along the radio signal using RDS ([]( As it’s a radio signal, there’s a chance of distortion. If the broadcaster doesn’t include error correction information, or the car radio doesn’t use this, you’ll get some scrambled text in your display.