Belgium

Last update: 17.11.2020 - older versions

DAB+ was officially launched in Belgium across Flemish-speaking parts of the country in November 2018, while the official launch of DAB+ in French-speaking Belgium took place in November 2019.

DAB+ population coverage across the country currently stands at 95%, while the number of new cars equipped with DAB+ in the country is 59%, a figure which is expected to grow significantly following the European Parliament’s vote to adopt a directive requiring all new cars sold in the European Union to be equipped with digital radio receivers.

More than 840.000 DAB+ devices have already been sold in Belgium as consumers' interest in DAB+ digital radio continues to grow.

DAB+ listening

Approximately 38% of the total radio listening volume in Dutch-speakin Belgium is now digital. DAB+ listening particularly high, claiming 17% of total listening in the region, compared to 9% this time last year.

Last update: 03.12.2018 - older versions

DAB coverage reaches more than 95% of the population across the country’s three principal regions – Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels. All motorways and main roads in Belgium are covered with DAB, with mobile coverage standing at approximately 99%.

Nationwide coverage of between one and three layers is achieved by combining the coverage of the different multiplexes on air in Belgium: one regional public multiplex for the Northern, Dutch speaking part (>95% DAB coverage of North population), one regional public multiplex for the Southern, French speaking part (90% DAB/DAB+ outdoor coverage of South population) and one regional commercial multiplex in the Northern part in DAB+ (25% coverage of the North population).

Last update: 02.06.2016 - older versions

In this country there are

on air.

RTBF has been DAB+ Slideshow (SLS) since 2014 on their station Classic 21 (Classic rock format),

Simulcast on AM / FM Exclusive on digital Total of services
DAB programmes 12 4 16
DAB+ programmes 11 1 12
Data services 0 2 2
Total23730

Last update: 08.10.2020 - older versions

The number of new cars equipped with DAB+ technology in Belgium currently stands at approximately 59%.

This figure is expected to grow significantly following the European Parliament’s approval of the directive requiring all new cars sold in the European Union to be equipped with digital radio receivers, which took place in November 2018.

The next steps for the Directive are: first, formal approval by the Council and, second, publication in the Official Journal of the European Union – at which point the Directive enters into force. Both these steps are expected to be completed in early 2019, after which, these rules will need to be transposed into national legislation within two years, thus requiring all new car radios for sale or rent within the EU to comply with the Directive.

Last update: 08.10.2020 - older versions

Cumulative DAB receiver sales in Belgium stand at 1,253,000 (from 2013 onwards - including automotive receivers).

The availability of DAB and DAB+ receivers in Belgium continues to grow with a range of devices now on the market, including kitchen radios, handheld and tuners. As more DAB+ services launch, with marketing campaigns to support them, sales are expected to grow significantly across Belgium over the next few years.

In French-speaking Belgium, the government, public and private broadcasters are supportive of EU receiver regulation.

Last update: 10.07.2015 - older versions

RTBF is currently testing three DAB+ simulcast FM stations with additional services such as slideshow in several bit rates, both for RTBF and for commercial or non-profit radio stations licenced by the regulator (CSA).

VRT is currently testing one DAB+ simulcast FM station with additional services such as slideshow in several bit rates.

Last update: 16.04.2020 - older versions

French-speaking Belgium (Wallonia and Brussels)

The French-speaking Belgium regulator - the CSA Belgium - announced on 11 April 2019 that it had received 123 applications for DAB+ licences - see the full list of applicants here.

In June 2018, the Parliament of Wallonia-Brussels Federation approved a draft decree to amend audiovisual services in French-speaking Belgium, paving the way for the deployment of DAB+ services in the region.​ DAB+ services went on air on 15 November 2018.

Flemish-speaking Belgium (Flanders and Brussels)

The public broadcaster for the Belgian Flemish Community, Vlaamse Radio – en Televisie omroep (VRT), has one DAB multiplex on air since 1997, covering Flanders and Brussels with eight radio stations. The network operator Norkring België operates VRT’s multiplex. As of 12 November 2018, all Flemish national radio stations are available on DAB+.

DSO

In May 2016, the Flemish government approved the concept of automatic renewal of FM licences for the major commercial broadcasters until 2022, alongside an obligation to invest in DAB+. At that time, the government decided that FM shutdown should take place two years after reaching 50% digital listening, with a complete switch-off date still to be decided.

Last update: 24.04.2020 - older versions

DAB+ explained by Digital Radio Belgium (FR)

This two-minute DAB+ promotional video published by Belgium's French-speaking Digital Radio office explains to consumers the various benefits of DAB+, such as improved sound quality and a wider choice of listening, as well as mentioning the EECC directive, which will require new cars across Europe to be compatible with digital radio.

The original video was made by VRT for Digital Radio Vlaanderen.

 

DAB+ - Explainer from DabplusBEfr on Vimeo.

 

DAB+ advertisement published by Digital Radio Flanders

In Flanders, radio is increasingly being listened to digitally. According to Ipsos research comissioned by the Flemish government published in October 2019, 26% of the total listening volume is now digital. The strongest increase was listening on DAB+, up from 3% to 9% year on year. This TV spot launched by www.dabplus.be/nl explains to consumers the benefits of moving from analogue to digital, particularly when listening in the car, with easy tuning and significantly improved sound quality.


TELEVISIE COMMERCIAL DAB+ BELGIË from DAB+ BE on Vimeo.

 

A dedicated digital radio website aiming to promote and inform consumers and broadcasters on DAB and DAB+ was launched in Flanders and Brussels in November 2018 (www.dabplus.be/nl).

Aside from the launch of its website dedicated to DAB, the region of Flanders has been particularly active in terms of marketing activities promoting DAB digital radio across TV, radio and online in the weeks leading to the 2018 holiday season. To that effect, two separate campaigns to raise awareness on DAB+ were set up as part of Digital Radio Week in November and December 2018, which all radio stations broadcasting in DAB+ radio participated in.

 

DAB - What receiver should you choose?
16.11.2020 - Belgium Belgium
This article aims to help consumers in Belgium choose the best DAB+ reeiver for their needs, whether that's at home or in the car. In Belgium, 41% of new vehicles are factory-fitted with DAB+.

(Moustique) Read more


DAB+ listening grows in Dutch-speaking parts of Belgium
16.11.2020 - Belgium Belgium
Approximately 38% of the total radio listening volume in Dutch-speakin Belgium is now digital. DAB+ listening particularly high, claiming 17% of total listening in the region, compared to 9% this time last year.

(dabplus.be) Read more


French-speaking Belgium celebrates Digital Radio Week
16.11.2020 - Belgium Belgium
To mark the one year anniversary since the launch of DAB+ digital radio services in French-speaking Belgium, maRadio.be has organised the Digital Radio Week - taking place from 16 to 22 November. As part of the event, information campaigns on DAB+ are now live across various platforms in French-speaking Belgium.

(RTBF) Read more


DAB+ celebrates one year since launching in French-speaking Belgium
10.11.2020 - Belgium Belgium
To mark the one year anniversary since its launch, maRadio.be is organising a Digital Radio week from 16-22 November to help further inform listeners on the benefits of DAB+. A marketing campaign will also be on air across various platforms from 16 to 24 November.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


Francis Goffin wins WorldDAB Award for Outstanding Service
05.11.2020 - Belgium Belgium
Belgium’s Francis Goffin has been awarded the 2020 WorldDAB Award for Oustanding Service. Francis has been working in the radio industry for over four decades, creating, managing and advising radio stations.

Read more


What receiver should you buy?
04.08.2020 - maRadio.be WorldDAB Member - Belgium Belgium
Belgium's French-speaking digital radio office outlines the different types of receivers available to listeners today, comparing digital, analogue and IP receivers and helping consumers make the right choice for their radio, at home or in the car.

(dabplus.be) Read more


New RTBF studio helps accommodate DAB+ growth
21.05.2020 - Belgium Belgium
Belgium's French language public broadcaster has added four new radio studios to its regional center in Mons. According to Hélène Ronveaux, RTBF Radio project manager, the first studio will be dedicsted to the VivaCité’s DAB+ channel Viva+."

(Radio World) Read more


New campaign on air in Belgium highlights DAB+ as key milestone in radio's evolution
07.05.2020 - Belgium Belgium
A campaign touching on the importance of radio in these difficult times has been launched by Maradio.be in Belgium. Broadcast across public and commercial radio stations, the campaign highlights the rollout of DAB+ as a key indicator of the medium's evolution and continuous development.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


DAB+ in Belgium - all you need to know
23.04.2020 - Belgium Belgium
This article outlines the state of DAB+ digital radio in Belgium, highlighting some the benefits of DAB+ with a video published by Belgium's French-speaking Digital Radio office.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


New national DAB+ station launch in Flanders
17.04.2020 - Belgium Belgium
Belgian commercial radio station Joe radio, owned by DPG Media, has expanded its portfolio this week by launching a new DAB+ radio station 'Joe - Best of Belgium' featuring the best of Belgian pop artists.

(Norkring.be ) Read more


Select Country:

Key Information

Status: regular
Population: 11.0 million
Population coverage: Sparkline Graph 97%
Services: 16 DAB, 12 DAB+, 2 Data
New cars with DAB/DAB+ as standard: Sparkline Graph 59%
Total Sales (cumulative): 1,253,000 devices
Last update: 08.10.2020

Useful Links

Belgian Broadcasting (BRF)
www.digitalradio.be
www.digitalradio.vlaanderen/
www.norkring.be/
Radio Télévision belge de la Communauté française de Belgique (RTBF)
De Vlaamse Radio – en Televisie omroep (VRT)