Digital Radio Updates From Europe and Africa - Radio Magazine

Digital Radio Updates From Europe and Africa

New stations added to Vienna DAB+; South Africa touts benefits of digital radio
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VIENNA — Rock Antenne and 88.6 are now available via digital terrestrial via DAB+ in addition to VHF FM. 

Rock Antenne has been active in the field of digital radio for many years and has now founded an Austrian subsidiary just for DAB+. 88.6, in addition to Radio Arabella and Radio Energy, are three Viennese private radio stations now accessible via DAB+, according to derstandard.at.

"It is gratifying that a large number of programs are already available in Austria just a few months after the start of DAB+,” Matthias Gerwinat, managing director of Digitalradio Österreich, said in the same article.

At the recent Radio Days Conference held in Johannesburg, South Africa, the deputy Government Minister Pinky Kekana spoke about the potential impact of digital radio on the citizenry of his country.

“Radio remains an important part of South Africa’s cultural, social and economic landscape. Every day approximately 76% of the adult population tune into the radio,” Kekana said. “Although Radio’s popularity as measured by its reach and audience hours has been relatively stable over recent years — radio is changing. The radio industry is in the midst of a significant period of transformation driven by a shift in technology to digital and by changes in the way listeners are consuming music and other content.

“Over the past two years or so the DAB+ discussion has featured quite extensively in gatherings like these. Correctly so, DAB+ is a game changer, it provides our citizens with better quality radio, and from a government perspective, it helps us broadcast important emergency messages on all channels simultaneously.”

Trials of both DAB+ and DRM have occurred in South Africa.

“During the trial period, we have seen how radio has been made more accessible for instance distance is no longer a factor. The vast and complicated landscapes of South Africa are no longer a limitation for broadcasters. The benefits of digital radio are well known and I need not sell them to you here,” Kekana said. Read the entire speech here. 

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France’s CSA has approved seven sites in the Hauts-de-France (the north of France) for DAB+; Germany will remain a VHF country for the foreseeable future; and in Norway, over-the-air radio listenership appears to have stabilized