DAB+ grows stronger despite pandemic
Radio has played a tremendously important role since the outbreak of Covid-19. Despite the significant challenges faced by many broadcasters since the start of the pandemic, radio listening is peaking, new DAB+ services are being launched across Europe and the WorldDABnetwork continues to grow.
Growing listening numbers
In Norway, the first country to have switched off national FM, listening numbers grew significantly over the summer months, with the month of July recording its highest listening figures to date –400,000 more than in July 2019.
In the UK, listening via DAB now accounts for 40% of all listening and 69% of digital listening, and 67% of the population is now tuning in via a digital platform.
Switzerland is preparing for a digital switch over, with FM to be switched off no later than 2024. DAB+ recently became the most popular listening platform and now accounts for 37% of all listening, while 68% of all listening is on digital platforms.
The EECC directive, which comes into force at the end of 2020 and will require all new cars across Europe to include digital radio capabilities, will further boost DAB+ listening.
New DAB+ services launching
DAB+ continues to allow broadcasters to innovate by launching new radio services, with numerous station launches taking place in recent months, and more to come in the near future.
Germany will see the launch of a second national multiplex in October 2020 -bringing 16 new DAB+ commercial radio stations to listeners across the country.
In France, where DAB+ is already on air in nine major cities, the large commercial radio groups and Radio France will launch national DAB+ in 2021. In Sweden, Bauer Media this summer launched seven radio stations on DAB+, joining their competitor Nordic Entertainment Group (NENT) who were already broadcasting on DAB+.