Germans turn on to DAB

Germany made the move to digital radio on 8th August, when 27 transmitters across the country brought DAB (digital audio broadcasting) to all the country’s major cities, as well as along its motorways, writes Kevin Hilton.
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Germany made the move to digital radio on 8th August, when 27 transmitters across the country brought DAB (digital audio broadcasting) to all the country’s major cities, as well as along its motorways, writes Kevin Hilton. ARD, the association of German regional public broadcasters, national public broadcaster Deutschlandradio and DRD (Digital Radio Deutschland, a group of private broadcasters) have worked together under the auspices of the national digital radio project office to bring about the launch of DAB in Europe’s largest radio market. German listeners now have access to 14 new channels, with services from commercial services Die Neue Welle, ERF, NRJ and Klassic Radio as well as Deutschlandradio. Consumer electronics manufacturers including Pure, Sony, Philips and Roberts have also been involved in the launch. Coverage in both the home and on the roads is put at 95 percent. This will be increased gradually, with 99 percent penetration expected in some parts of the country. The final stages of the implementation are set for 2014. Commenting on the launch, Michael Reichert of the German digital radio project office says, “Both public and commercial broadcasters have long believed digital is the way forward. Now, for the first time, they are working together to ensure a successfully co-ordinated launch in Germany. The importance of radio now and in the future has been shown by the close co-operation between not only broadcasters but also the network operator, the radio industry as a whole, retailers, manufacturers and the government. These are exciting times for both listeners and Germany’s radio industry.” Jorn Jensen (pictured), the president of WorldDMB, which coordinates the introduction of DAB digital radio around the world, adds, “This heralds the start of a new era for radio in Germany, which will ensure that radio enters the digital age. Listeners in Germany can expect new content, and exciting range of receivers and to be part of what is a revolution in radio.” www.worlddab.org

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