Belgium

Last update: 11.02.2021 - 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 93%, a figure which is expected to reach 100% in 2021.

DAB+ listening in Dutch-speaking Belgium (Q4 2020)

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

DAB+ listening in French-speaking Belgium in 2020

The latest figures from the Ipsos / maRadio.be survey carried out at the end of 2020 are clear: awareness and consumption of DAB+ is soaring. Digital platforms now represent a third of listening volume, with DAB+ as the leading digital platform for the first time, while listening on FM is down by 18%

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: 03.03.2021 - older versions

In this country there are

on air.

Please note:

(a)    These web pages are updated regularly to reflect current services on air, however they may not be exactly up to date.

(b)    The logos shown on these pages are for illustrative purposes only – manufacturers and broadcasters are directed here for information on implementing station logos.

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 72 54 126
Data services 0 2 2
Total7256128

Last update: 11.02.2021 - older versions

DAB+ is now fitted as standard in new passenger cars in Belgium, and 93% of new vehicles sold in 2020 included DAB+, compared to 89% in 2019 (source: Jato Dynamics).

Last update: 11.02.2021 - 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, DAB+ compatible domestic receivers sales grew by 40% from 2019 to 2020 while in that same period, FM receivers fell by 19%. On average, 40% of domestic receivers sold in 2020 included DAB+ compared to 27% in 2019 (source: Gfk).

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+.

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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.

 

The digital radio tomorrow!
28.09.2012 - Belgium Belgium
Currently analogue radio broadcasting allows only limited data in addition to the sound. "We hope that tomorrow, digital radio will go even further, the possibilities are great even if you do not yet know exactly where you are going to," said Patrice Journiac, project manager at Bel RTL.

(RTL.Be) Read more


Finding the spectrum to power the wireless revolution
19.06.2012 - Belgium Belgium
Neelie Kroes Vice-President of the European Commission responsible for the Digital Agenda Finding the spectrum to power the wireless revolution Spectrum Management Conference

(Europa) Read more


Norkring Belgium look towards offering DAB+
03.05.2012 - Belgium Belgium
Norkring Belgium, the owners of the digital terrestrial transmitter networks for TV and radio in Flanders and Brussels are looking towards offering DAB+ and rolling it out!

(Broadband TV News) Read more


The end of the FM band would it be already programmed?
16.12.2011 - maRadio.be WorldDAB Member - Belgium Belgium
In radio,2011 wil be remembered as the year that the transition to digital was raised. For several months, Francis Goffin, Director of radios RTBF and strong supporter and promoter of digital terrestrial radio has been conducting negotiations with the private networks to take a common position on standard digital French-speaking Belgium.

Read more


EU plans to make high-speed Internet compulsory
04.01.2010 - Belgium Belgium
... for example by making new radio frequencies available to mobile operators instead of reserving the digital dividend for broadcasters. ...

(EurActiv) Read more


RSPG elects Viola as chairman, sees spectrum usage methods Monday 9 November ...
17.11.2009 - Belgium Belgium
The RSPG will also contribute to the implementation of the European Commission's roadmap on the digital dividend and continue a joint effort with the ERG, ...

(Telecompaper) Read more


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Key Information

Status: regular
Population: 11.0 million
Population coverage: Sparkline Graph 97%
Services: 126 DAB+, 2 Data
Line-fit automotive sales (cumulative): 938,496 devices
New cars with DAB/DAB+ as standard: Sparkline Graph 82%
Total Sales (cumulative): 1,552,000 devices
Penetration by household: Sparkline Graph 21%
Last update: 18.06.2021

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)