Tuesday, 12 July 2011

PORTUGAL: DAB digital radio switched off

On 1 June 2011, Rádio e Televisão de Portugal [RTP], the state broadcaster in Portugal, instructed Anacom, the national transmission provider, to switch off all DAB radio transmitters.

RTP explained in a press statement that its decision was the outcome of budgetary constraints and the fact that no commercial broadcasters had agreed to broadcast on DAB. Additionally, it said that “high priced radio receivers had prevented many people acquiring them.”

According to one Portuguese newspaper:

“The DAB terrestrial digital radio system was launched in August 1998 by RTP and by Anacom, which manages the national transmission system. Despite having national coverage, which was decreed by law in July 1998 that permitted broadcasts by all radio stations interested in the platform, DAB never took off in Portugal. Until now, the platform has been limited to relays of existing FM broadcasts by state radio because no commercial radio station signed up. The implementation of DAB also struggled with the fact that there was insufficient supply in the Portuguese market of DAB radio receivers, according to sources consulted by this publication. Apparently, the DAB system was costing €250,000 per annum over more than a decade. The need for RTP to invest in replacing this transmitter network may have weighed heavily on the decision to suspend the service.”

GMCS, the Portuguese media regulator, explained in April 2011:

“RTP claims that, despite the significant investment totalling €6.3m to date, the reality is that few Portuguese used the [DAB] system, which leads us to conclude that the allocation of resources to this project does not meet the efficiency requirement and good practice required for public funds.”

[thanks to Eivind Engberg and Wohnort]


Anonymous said...

Digital radio is failing all over the world. Analog is robust and cheap and works extremely well. So tell me why we need it again?

Anonymous said...

In the UK 38.2% of homes have a digital radio, 13 million digital radios have been sold to date, and the FM spectrum is full.

Norway, Denmark, Switzerland, Belgium and Germany already broadcast radio digitally using the DAB family, while Sweden and Italy are running trials.

Roy Sandgren said...

DABPLUS will replace the old dab and dabplus is an option to AM/FM if the AM/FM band is full in the area.AM/FM/DAB+/DRM/DRM+ are broadcasting standards inside the European Union. You got the freedom to use all bands for your broadcasting...

Ricky the Quick said...

Well, Digital Audio Broadcasting is failing in Europe and HD Radio is failing here in the USA. Digital radio's time is either come and gone, or not yet here.