Last update: 02-03-2017 - older versions

Digital Radio Action Plan

German Minister Dorothee Bär published in February 2017 the Digital Radio Action Plan on the BMVI (Federal Ministry of Traffic and Transport) website:

The plan was passed by a majority of the Board, with the exception of VPRT (one of the two associations which represent private broadcasters) who opposed the plan and have now left the Board. Nonetheless, the rollout of the plan will continue and the remaining partners on the Board are now obliged to follow the eight measures written in the roadmap.  There will now be a series of discussions with the individual states (Länder), led by Rhineland-Palatinate (Heike Raab) and BMVI (Dorothee Bär). The Digital Radio Board is headed by State Secretary Bär and includes representatives from the individual states, broadcasters, the federal network agency and industry.

2nd national multiplex (Bundesmux)

The allocation of frequencies for the 2nd national DAB+ multiplex has been approved by the Presidents of the German Laender. The Tender process will launch week commencing 12 December 2016 and will complete in April 2017. Services could be on air by mid 2017. The second national DAB+ multiplex, which was initially requested in September 2016, will aim to cover nationwide private radio programs.

Four applications for the second nationwide DAB+ multiplex have been submitted to the Sächsisches Landesanstalt für private Rundfunk und neue Medien (SLM) and include Digital Audio Broadcasting Platform DABP GmbH, Absolut Digital GmbH  & Co. KG, Media Broadcast Digital Radio GmbH and Radi/o digital GmbH.

1st national multiplex

The nationwide DAB+ network is to be extended by around 50 transmitters with a completion date of 2016. Germany is now developing a DSO strategy. 

EU-wide market development of digital radio

At its meeting on 29 June in Berlin, the German-French Radio Commission requested the German and the French Governments to ask EU Institutions to assist with EU-wide market development of digital radio, by making it mandatory for all new radio receivers sold to be equipped with DAB+. 

German Ministry for Digital Infrastructure: DAB+ broadcast is the successor to FM

With its first meeting in June 2015, the German Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) is the host of a high-level Digital Radio Board for Germany which has the task to create the framework for a roadmap regarding a smooth transition from FM to DAB+ as soon as possible considering that the switch from analogue to digital radio in Germany is necessary and inevitable.

The Digital Radio Board currently comprises 15 high-level representatives of BMVI and federal states, ARD, Deutschlandradio, commercial broadcasters, regional media authorities, radio set and car manufacturers and the federal network agency.

By common accord between its members, the board is heading to create a specific timetable for the switch from the analogue to  digital terrestrial radio within a year’s time.

Read the BMVI press release.

The Prime Minister of Rhineland-Palatinate has announced support for an initiative outlining that all radio devices should have digital capability. This can be seen as a very important initiative for the development of digital radio in Germany and across the rest of Europe.

Useful Documents

Fact-sheet by ARD-Generalsekretatiat Dr. Susanne Pfab 

Statement by the head of production- and technology (PTKO) Dr. Ulrich Liebenow


Last update: 07-03-2017 - older versions

Digital radio is available in all metropolitan areas. The total coverage (combined coverage of ARD multiplexes and the national multiplex) is 95% of the area and more than 96% of the population (mobile outdoor). The combined coverage (mobile indoor) is 74.1% of the area and 82.1% of the population.

The 1st level road coverage of the national network is 12.700 km which is equal to 98%.

ARD multiplexes in particular cover 81.65% of the area and 89.5% of the population.

As of January 2017 the nation-wide DAB+ network has 110 transmitters.

Detailed information on the network coverage can be found on

Last update: 11-07-2016 - older versions

In this country there are

on air.

In total, there are more than 150 radio stations which can be received digitally across the 16 German Bundeslaender: 11 national programmes, over 60 public stations distributed  by ARD members, and around 80 commercial stations (regional or local). The majority of radio programmes are equipped with accompanying data services including at least Dynamic Label Segment or DL+ and Slideshow. See Slideshow on air.  In particular, all public ARD radio brands are broadcast with additional services accompanying the live audio service: Now-next information (DLS/DL+), Programme previews (EPG), Weather and traffic charts, news headlines, track/title-cover (slideshow/categorised slideshow), Future mobility service (TPEG), and Hybrid EPGs and Slideshows (RadioVIS and RadioEPG). Download a presentation on Slideshow in Germany.

National programme offers

Nine commercial radio services as well as three radio programmes from the national public broadcaster Deutschlandradio are broadcast on the national multiplex, which is operated by Media Broadcast. Pop, rock, electronic, and classical music are available as well as spoken word content, debates and Christian, culture radio, and national league football content. This combines an attractive selection of both mainstream and niche content.

Regulation for a second national multiplex is pending.

Regional programme offers

More than 60 radio programmes provided by the nine ARD-broadcasters are available. The majority of those are ARD’s well-known FM-brands as well as 17 new digital-only stations with a terrestrial provision exclusively via DAB+ such as NDR Blue, WDR KiRaKa, BR PULS, or MDR Klassik. All ARD programmes are equipped with an ARD-wide identical (and mandatory) set of data services to accompany the live audio service.

In addition, around 80 commercial services are provided via regional or local multiplexes operated by Media Broadcast.

Regional Services on air in Germany


Population: 10.7 million

Total coverage: 92.7 %

Two networks, one mixed multiplex for public and commercial programmes, the second with public programmes. By end of 2014 the mixed multiplex will be extended by adding nine commercial radio programmes, alongside the further network development to increase the coverage of both multiplexes.


Population: 12.0 million

Total coverage: 96.0%

Two networks, one for public programmes, the second for commercial programmes. Additional local networks are available in the major Bavarian cities such as Munich, Nürnberg, Ingolstadt and Augsburg. Together with the national multiplex up to 49 radio programmes are available in some regions.


Population: 3.5 million

Total coverage: 100%

Two networks, one for public programmes, the second for both public and commercial programmes, are fully covering Berlin and the surrounding area.


Population: 2.5 million

Total coverage: 69.9%

Brandenburg is currently just covered by the multiplexes which are being broadcast in Berlin. The majority of Brandenburgian people are living in the wider area around Berlin. The network expansion in the rural areas of Brandenburg is under consideration.


Population: 0.7 million

Total coverage: 92.3%

The Bremen area is covered by three multiplexes. The most important one provides the Radio Bremen programmes (Bremen Eins, Bremen Vier, Nordwestradio) as well as co-operated programmes such as Funkhaus Europa, WDR KiRaKa. Unique DAB-content is available on the service called Bremen Next.


Population: 1.8 million

Total coverage: 100%

There is one multiplex for public programmes, operated by NDR, which fully covers the area around Hamburg.


Population: 6 million

Total coverage: 93.2%

There are two networks, one for public radio programmes and the second for commercial programmes, covering the metropolitan area around Frankfurt and Wiesbaden. The public broadcaster mux covers rural areas as well as the important transit routes in northern Hesse.


Population: 1.6 million

Total coverage: 20.3%

There is one multiplex for public programmes, operated by NDR, which covers the metropolitan area around the capital Schwerin.


Population: 7.9 million

Total coverage: 83.5%

One multiplex for public programmes, operated by NDR, which covers the main transit routes as well as high-populated and rural areas.


Population: 17.8 million

Total coverage: 97.1%

One mixed multiplex for public and commercial programmes, operated by WDR, which covers the most populated federal state in Germany, including the so called Ruhr region.


Population: 4.0 million

Total coverage: 89.3%

One mixed multiplex for public and commercial programmes covers the metropolitan area in the Rhein-Main region as well as rural areas and the important transit routes.


Population: 1.0 million

Total coverage: 98.2%

One mixed multiplex for public and commercial programmes reaches nearly full coverage of Germany‘s smallest area state.


Population: 4.2 million

Total coverage: 98.4%

There is one mixed multiplex for public and commercial programmes, which has been on air before the DAB+ digital radio launch in 2011. This mixed multiplex covers the majority of Saxony. In addition, public broadcaster MDR has established new networks in the metropolitan areas of Saxony.


Population: 2.3 million

Total coverage: 95.7%

There is one mixed multiplex for both public and commercial programmes, which was already on air before the digital radio launch in 2011 and covers the majority of Saxony-Anhalt. In addition, public broadcaster MDR has established new networks in the metropolitan areas of Saxony-Anhalt.


Population: 2.8 million

Total coverage: 75.0 %

There is one multiplex for public programmes, operated by NDR, covers the main transit routes as well as the capital Kiel.


Population: 2.2 million

Total coverage: 88.3%

There is one mixed multiplex for public and commercial programmes, which has already been on air before the DAB+ digital radio launch in 2011 and covers the majority of Thuringia. In addition public broadcaster MDR has established new networks in the metropolitan areas of Thuringia.

Simulcast on AM / FM Exclusive on digital Total of services
DAB+ programmes 110 40 150

Last update: 20-01-2017 - older versions

DAB+ as standard

In Germany, DAB radio is available in 80% of new cars – primarily as an option.

Take-up rate

The following statistics are from VDA's DAT automotive report 2016

  • take-up rate of new cars (German manufacturers) with DAB-radio: 21.4% in 2016 (2015: 14.4%)
  • Foreign manufacturers: 20.2%
  • Total fleet of new cars (German and foreign manufacturers) 21.0%.


The German government recommends DAB+ as the platform for the delivery of safety relevant traffic data.  All German car manufacturers provide DAB+ dealer fit solutions and they are working on the integration of additional data services for in-car usage such as Slideshow or EPG for in-car and TPEG in particular. Various aftermarket solutions are available to allow digital radio reception in car.


Two commercial service providers (Garmin and Mediamobile) have been broadcasting traffic and travel information using the TPEG standard via the national DAB+ multiplex since 2013.  In addition, the public service ARD-TPEG-service is broadcast by several regional ARD-multiplexes, fulfilling the European Commission ITS directive requiring European Union member states to provide drivers with free safety related traffic information.

Last update: 02-03-2017 - older versions

The Prime Minister of Rhineland-Palatinate has announced support for an initiative outlining that all radio devices should have digital capability. This can be seen as a very important initiative for the development of digital radio in Germany and across the rest of Europe.

GfK sales figures indicate continuously a significant growth of the market: up 21% in 2016 and up 37% in 2014 in comparison with the previous years. The number of devices available on the market has grown from 120 devices in 2011 to more than 400 by mid-2015 with manufacturers offering products at all price points and starting with less than 20 Euros.

Market Research

  • Radio ratings with DAB+ for the first time will be available in Autumn 2016.
  • 13% of all German households have DAB+ in 2016
  • In Bavaria, 16% of households own a DAB+ digital radio in 2016.
  • 3.1 million DAB+ digital radios have been sold in Gemany since the launch of DAB+ 5 years ago. Source
  • 900,000 DAB+ radios sold in 2015 (source: GfK)
  • 360,000 DAB+ radios sold in the period from January – May 2016 (source: GfK)
  • At least every 20th car radio operates on DAB+

A comprehensive list of DAB+ receivers available in Germany can be found at:

Initiative Digital Radio Deutschland Product Finder

Overview list of the digital radio receivers available on the German market

Digitalisierungsbericht which includes the Infratest figures (2.7 million receivers in German households) presented during IFA


Last update: 08-09-2014 - older versions

Key features of regulation for digital radio in Germany are:

  • DAB+ was selected to secure the future of digital radio in Germany in 2009
  • Licences on the national multiplex were awarded on a beauty contest basis
  • Digital radio services are broadcast on Band III (Channels 5 – 12)
  • Due to the federal structure of Germany, spectrum is assigned on both regional and national basis
  • There are two types of licences:
  1. Telecommunication licence, awarded from the National Federal Network Agency (BnetzA) to the network operator to run the network
  2. Media licence, awarded from the media authority of the Bundesländer to the broadcasters
  • Media licences are assigned on state (Länder) level by the 16 media authorities (Medienanstalten)
  • In terms of the national multiplex, one of these media authorities was in charge of the allocation of the licences
  • There is ongoing regulatory discussion to renew FM licences only when broadcasting also via DAB+

Last update: 30-11-2015 - older versions

ARD Group, the commercial broadcasters on the national multiplex, Deutschlandradio, and the network operator Media Broadcast – together participate in the marketing-“Initiative Digitalradio Deutschland” – and are keen to build on past cooperation and to increase synergies. Considering ARD’s reiterated strategic commitment on digital radio in particular, the parties involved are working on a mutual concept for a consolidated communication to the market. As a first step, they changed the campaign logo by replacing the slogan “Radio der Zukunft” with “DAB+”.



December 2015

The editorial team of will present on the homepage again from 1 to 24 December a virtual Advent calendar. Everyday, a little door behind the Digital Radio logo will open to reveal the raffle. For 24 days, digital radios will be raffled.

Last update: 05-08-2016 - older versions

ARD is investigating the possibility of supporting emergency warning announcements (EWS) via DAB+ to improve the provision of safety relevant information to the listener in situations of acute danger such as industrial plant incidents or severe weather warnings, both in the home and in vehicle.

In preparation for the introduction of an EMF (Emergency Warning Functionality) channel for the Free State of Bavaria, DAB+ multiplex operator Bayern Digital Radio GmbH is planning an information channel on DAB+.

The duration of the pilot project is initially limited to the period from September to December 2016. After successful implementation, it will be possible to establish the information channel as a permanent service on Bayern Digital Radio's DAB+ multiplex in Bavaria. Source

Four applicants bid for second DAB+ multiplex licence
23.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
The German Commission on Licensing and Supervision (ZAK) has received four applications for the second nationwide DAB+ multiplex licence. Due to the number of applicants, ZAK has now launched its ‘Communications Procedure’, to determine whether any of the applicants - Digital Audio Broadcasting Platform, Absolut Digital, Media Broadcast Digital Radio and Radio digital GmgH - can agree on a joint application.
From Telecompaper :

SonoroSTEREO 2
21.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
The sonoroSTEREO 2 with Bluetooth, FM and DAB radio, USB playback and a slot-in-CD drive impresses lite magazine with its unique design, simple elegance, excellent workmanship and great features.
From lite:

Broadcasting Commission takes note of the DAB+ action plan
17.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
The Radio Commission of the Länder took note of the "Action Plan for the Transformation of Radio Broadcasting in the Digital Age" at its meeting on 15 March. Last month, the action plan was also approved by BMVI's Digital Radio Board.
From Digitalradio Büro Deutschland:

Technical innovations with small-scale DAB in Rhineland-Palatinate
15.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
The Landeszentrale für Medien und Kommunikation (LMK), Rhineland-Palatinate, has presented an innovative project aimed at facilitating entry into the digital world, especially for local radio and broadcasting media. The LMK has been working in cooperation with the University of Kaiserslautern and the TU Kaiserslautern exploring the suitability of the small-scale DAB transmitter concept for local radio.
From Radioszene:

Timely schedule for the 2nd bundesmux
11.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
The second nationwide digital radio multiplex is to be broadcast as soon as possible. The media institutions have set a tight schedule for this and four applications are currently being considered from Digital Audio Broadcasting Platform DABP GmbH, Absolut Digital GmbH & Co. KG, Media Broadcast Digital Radio GmbH and Radio digital GmbH.
From Radio Woche:

WorldDAB Automotive 2017 set for June 21
10.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
WorldDAB Automotive 2017 will once again unite automakers and their suppliers with broadcasters from across Europe. The event will provide the latest information on coverage, new on-air content and joint digital radio automotive initiatives; a look how the digital radio roll-out benefits drivers; a status update on Norway’s digital switchover on the automotive sector; and insight into WorldDAB’s Automotive User Experience Group, which aims to improve the digital radio listening experience in the car.
From Radio World:

DAB+ : federal and state governments together for the success of digital radio
09.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
After the presentation of the action plan for the further development of DAB+ in Germany by the Digital Radio Board of the Federal Government and the federal states are firmly committed to the success of DAB+.
From Infosat:

Commitment to the success of DAB+ in Germany
09.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
The Digital Radio Board of the Federal Government and the federal states are firmly committed to the success of DAB+ in Germany. At the 'DAB+ in dialogue' event this week Dorothee Bär, Parliamentary State Secretary at the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI) outlined how the current digital radio roadmap provides a good backbone for the roll out of DAB+ throughout Germany.
From Digital Radio Deutschland :

New date set for WorldDAB Automotive 2017
08.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
Mark June 21, 2017 on your calendars if you plan on flying to Munich, Germany, to learn the latest about digital audio and the "connected car." Car makers and their suppliers will get to meet broadcasters from across Europe at WorldDAB Automotive 2017.

New date set for WorldDAB Automotive 2017
08.03.2017 - Germany - Germany
Car makers and their suppliers will get to meet broadcasters from across Europe at WorldDAB Automotive 2017, to be held at the Holiday Inn Munich-City Centre, located within walking distance of Rosenheimer Platz S-Bahn station. Hosted by WorldDAB, this unique and free event brings together auto manufacturers with EU stakeholder groups, Tier 1 suppliers to the automotive industry and representatives from commercial and public broadcasters.
From Radio & Television Business Report :

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Key Information

Status: regular
Population: 81.6 million
Population coverage: Sparkline Graph 96%
Services: 150 DAB+
Line-fit automotive sales (cumulative): 1,913,000 devices
Total Sales (cumulative): 6,397,000 devices
Penetration by household: Sparkline Graph 13%
Last update: 07.03.2017

Useful Links

Intelligent transport systems Action Plan and Directive
Preliminary Presentation on Digital Radio in 2014 at IFA Berlin Sept 2014
Digitisation Report (English) - Die Medienanstalten, 2015