France

Last update: 22.09.2023 - older versions

DAB+ : a structural choice for the radio industry

Launched in 2014 in Paris, Nice and Marseille, DAB+ is now seen as critical to contribute to the future of radio and to address the saturation of FM. It is a means to preserve diversity and plurality. As DAB+ is reaching a turning point, the regulator, Arcom, is launching in 2023 a consultation with the radio industry which will include the switchover from FM to DAB+ both in the metropolitan area and overseas. The economics of radio are a key element of the expected white paper, as well as the potential acceleration of the deployment.

Deployment of DAB+

On 12 October 2021, France launched two new national multiplexes broadcasting 26 DAB+ stations, including national services from Radio France, leading private broadcasters and four new national services. The new multiplexes are broadcast along the major motorway corridors of Paris-Lyon-Marseille. The 26 services include four new DAB+ only stations and 22 stations that are also broadcast in FM. Extension to more main roads and highly populated areas is planned for the end of 2023. These 26 radios are in addition to the hundreds of radio stations already available regionally and locally on DAB+

The CSA rollout plan, the so-called "nodes and arcs strategy" described in 2017, which also includes continued regional and local rollouts alongside the launch of national services, was updated in 2021. 

Arcom says that "In total, it is expected that 17 multiplexes, extended or local, will have started broadcasting during the summer of 2023. At the end of these start-ups, the coverage of the metropolitan population by DAB+ will exceed 50%."

French DAB+ Broadcast Networks Factsheet

A new factsheet on DAB+ digital radio in France has been produced for automotive manufacturers, as the country achieves over 50% DAB+ population coverage.

The factsheet from WorldDAB - the global industry forum for DAB digital radio - was produced as part of the work of its Automotive Working Group, in partnership with network operator TDF, and RadioDNS which promotes hybrid radio.   

France DAB+ Broadcast Networks

Receiver legislation

Older pieces of legislation in France related to DAB+ in cars have been superseded by the transposition in November 2020 of the EECC into French legislation. This law passed the last stage and was made official in December 2020, with the transposition of the EECC into French law officially published on 28 May 2021. Domestic receivers, for which the reception function of radio services broadcast is not purely incidental, and have an alphanumeric screen, must be capable of receiving digital terrestrial radio. Discussions are ongoing to make DAB+ mandatory in all receivers. 

Last update: 22.09.2023 - older versions

DAB+ digital terrestrial radio continues to roll out across France. With its arrival in towns such as Bayonne, Besançon, Brest, Clermont-Ferrand, Metz, Nancy and Pau, this summer DAB+ passed the symbolic milestone of covering 50% of the French population. A trial has also been underway in Martinique since January. With the continued roll-out of national antennas between October 2023 and March 2024, more than 60% of the population will be covered by DAB+ by early 2024.

In December 2021, the French media regulator CSA, published an updated DAB+ roadmap highlighting DAB+ developments plans for the 2022-2024 period.

According to the new roadmap, calls for applications will be launched for 50 local allotments in that period of time – these primarily concerned the cities of Dijon, Lyon, Marseille, Rennes, Caen, Nancy, Paris, Bordeaux, Clermont-Ferrand, Poitiers and Toulouse. An overseas trial has also been licensed in Martinique. 

Last update: 22.09.2023 - older versions

In this country there are

on air.

French DAB+ Broadcast Networks Factsheet

A new factsheet on DAB+ digital radio in France has been produced for automotive manufacturers, as the country achieves over 50% DAB+ population coverage.

The factsheet from WorldDAB - the global industry forum for DAB digital radio - was produced as part of the work of its Automotive Working Group, in partnership with network operator TDF, and RadioDNS which promotes hybrid radio.   

France DAB+ Broadcast Networks

 

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.

An interactive map showing all services currently on air in France, as well as those licensed to go on air, can be found at: Ma radio DAB Plus - CSA - Conseil supérieur de l’audiovisuel.

Simulcast on AM / FM Exclusive on digital Total of services
DAB+ programmes 358 102 460

Last update: 16.02.2022 - older versions

In France, as of H2 2021, 90% of new cars sold are equipped with DAB+ as standard (Source: JATO Dynamics 2022).

Last update: 05.02.2021 - older versions

Receiver legislation 

In December 2018 DAB+ coverage reached 21.3% of the French population, which triggered a law requiring that all radio receivers (including in-car) sold in France be compatible with the broadcasting standards (ie DAB+). This 2018 law was amended in June 2020 to align with the EECC deadline of 20 December 2020.

In November 2020, the French parliament voted in favour of a law to transpose the EECC into French legislation. This law passed the last stage and was made official in December 2020, enabling the government to take a final decree which is expected by early 2021. The decree will confirm that new passenger cars in France will be required to include digital terrestrial radio from 20 December 2020, in line with the EECC. Additional obligations regarding consumer receivers have yet to be agreed and may also be included in that decree enacting the EECC.

More detailed information is in the WorldDAB EECC Factsheet

Last update: 02.10.2018 - older versions

40,000 households in eastern Paris can now receive DAB as part of a test by Towercast. Radio France is broadcasting their portfolio of radio stations on that trial. 

There is one trial local multiplex in East Paris and one trial local multiplex on air in Rambouillet. One of the 5 DAB+ stations on air in Rambouillet are available exclusively via DAB+ digital radio (not on FM).

Several stations offer Slideshow services (SLS).

Last update: 13.06.2022 - older versions

The Regulator (ARCOM - previously CSA) refers to a “Nodes and Arcs” phase of DAB+ rollout bringing DAB+ coverage to the 50 largest cities and to the highways connecting them. The target completion date is end of 2022. Then the so-called “Percolation Phase” will cover the lower density regions.

Four calls for applications are expected by end of 2023 to reach 50 smaller cities and their surrounding areas. From the point of view of enhancing the digital radio experience for consumers, the CSA initiated a forum with French broadcasters to discuss the DAB+ user experience.

DAB+ regulation in France is outlined on the French Media regulator's website here

The 2021 annual report of the CSA / ARCOM which includes substantial information about the deployment of DAB+ in France is available to download here

 

Last update: 05.02.2021 - older versions

DABplus.fr

The website DABplus.fr was set up to summarise the deployment of DAB+ in France. It is paid by and for stakeholders of DAB+ in France. www.DABplus.fr

Consumer Marketing

French broadcasters are developing a marketing strategy in preparation for the national launch of DAB+.  The work involves collaboration between all broadcaster groups - Radio France, the large private broadcasters as well as independent radios.  

Radio Orient soon to be broadcast on DAB+ in Morlaix
22.05.2024 - France France
On 24 April 2024, Arcom selected Radio Orient for the Morlaix area on DAB+ as part of call 9 launched on 27 July 2022. ‘This is a further vote of confidence and a real source of satisfaction for the station, which is thus continuing to develop its network,’ explains the radio station. In 2024, other areas will be served by Radio Orient and other radio broadcasters, who will significantly increase the diversity of content on offer in many towns and cities. ‘DAB+ technology is an extended, free and unlimited radio offering. It delivers unprecedented sound quality, guarantees more stable broadcasting and means that certain radio stations can be listened to on the move without having to worry about frequencies,’ points out the Radio Orient team.

(La Lettre Pro de la Radio) Read more


SIRTI calls on government to take additional measures to ensure that DAB+ is a way forward for radio
20.05.2024 - France France
Over the past 10 years, radio broadcasters, and independent radio broadcasters in particular, have been working hard to develop DAB+. Following the creation of the Ensemble pour le DAB+ association and a recent campaign to raise public awareness of this broadcasting technology, SIRTI is calling for the reinstatement of Article 15 on DAB+ as a guarantee of radio sovereignty and is highlighting 3 measures needed to ensure that DAB+ continues to play its essential role in modernising the radio medium. The first concerns the Government's support for the provisions of the law on audiovisual reform introduced by L. Lafon. The SIRTI reaffirms the importance of the bill's requirement for new cars to be fitted with an FM/DAB+ radio receiver, to guard against the possible disappearance of car radios. It is also asking that FM-only receivers no longer be put on sale.

(Le SIRTI) Read more


One-third of listeners in France have already heard of DAB+
14.05.2024 - France France
The Digital Barometer is a sample survey that measures the adoption of digital equipment and uses among the French population. It is conducted jointly by Arcom and other media organisations. The Digital Barometer is a benchmark study of the spread of information and communication technologies in French society. The report says: "With regard more specifically to DAB+ digital terrestrial radio, which is still being rolled out in France, a third (33%) of listeners have already heard of this reception method (including 13% who say they can describe exactly what it is), i.e. 28% of the French population. The awareness of this new technology - as well as the level of equipment - is significantly higher among tech-savvy groups (men, young people, people living in the Paris region, upper-income groups)."

(Arcom) Read more


DAB+ increasing in regular use in France: Observatoire
26.04.2024 - France France
The French regulator Arcom, and its partners in the 'Observatoire de l'équipement audiovisuel des foyers de France métropolitaine' present the results for the second half of 2023 for television and radio. Although DAB+-compatible equipment remains stable among individuals aged 13 and over (24.5%), an increasing number of those equipped cite equipment receiving DAB+ as one of the three most commonly used media for listening to the radio (+6.1 points compared to 2022). The report profiles DAB+-equipped individuals, noting higher levels for under 25s (21.5% of DAB+ subscribers, compared with 16.9% of all individuals aged 13 and over) and those living outside the Paris region (84.8% against 81.5%).

(Arcom) Read more


Virgin Radio launched on DAB+ at 4pm
18.04.2024 - France France
The handover from Virage Radio to Virgin Radio took place on 15 April at 4pm. This is the first stage in Espace Group's strategy to relaunch the brand in France. On FM, of course, but also on DAB, where Virgin Radio, 'THE rock station', is hoping to establish itself rapidly. Virgin Radio is taking over the FM and DAB+ broadcasts of Virage Radio, an Espace Group station already firmly established with a rock programme in over 30 French cities. Virgin Radio has been broadcasting its programmes on FM (Lyon, Grenoble, Chambéry, etc.) and DAB+ in France's main cities (Paris, Marseille, Bordeaux, Nantes, Nice, Lille, Strasbourg, etc.).

(La Lettre Pro de la Radio) Read more


Flash FM and the benefits of DAB+ for independent radio
11.04.2024 - France France
Flash FM is 21 years old and began with a computer on a chair. From this small community radio station in Limoges in Haute-Vienne, a commercial medium emerged, with five FM frequencies, two DAB frequencies and 75,000 listeners per week in four regions in west-central France. Like many radio stations, Flash FM’s future lies in DAB+. Flash FM Managing Director Pascal Thomas sets out his strategy: “We’ll be able to communicate that we’re finally a regional radio station for the whole of Limousin. It’s a real satisfaction to be on FM throughout the region and to be developing DAB+ in the extended Limoges area, which represents coverage of Haute-Vienne and Corrèze. Plus, our arrival in Poitiers on DAB+, something that wouldn’t have been possible with FM.” Thomas adds that he would like to launch his station in the Charente region, in Angoulême and Cognac. “That’s the whole point of DAB technology; it’s a real objective.”

(RedTech) Read more


Espace Group to launch Virgin Radio France on DAB+
11.04.2024 - France France
Virgin Radio, "THE rock station", is coming to France on FM and DAB+. Launched by Espace Group, a major player in media and digital audio, Virgin Radio will be on air on Monday 15 April at 4pm, with a special live broadcast featuring its entire team. Virgin Radio is taking over the FM and DAB+ broadcasts of Virage Radio, an Espace Group station already firmly established with a rock programme in more than 30 French cities. Virgin Radio will broadcast its programmes on DAB+ in France's main cities (Paris, Marseille, Bordeaux, Nantes, Nice, Lille, Strasbourg, etc.) "Virgin Radio promises to broadcast the best in rock music in France's biggest cities on FM and DAB+, while remaining close to its listeners through the rock concerts it will offer them," Julien Fregonara, Managing Director of Espace Group, told La Lettre Pro de la Radio.

(La Lettre Pro de la Radio) Read more


Counting down to … Cannes
11.04.2024 - France France
This has nothing to do with the most famous film festival in the world. We are counting down the days to the launch of our very own DAB+ transmitter in Cannes ! In just a few days, listeners in Cannes will be able to listen to 13 community radio stations licensed in the Nice area on DAB+ Radio, thanks to a new extension to the West of the region. The additional transmitter, purchased by World Radio Paris thanks (in part) to our listeners’ generous donations in 2023, was just installed in the hills above the city of Cannes. When powered on, it will allow full coverage of the Côte d’Azur, in addition to the existing transmitter located in Nice. The two devices will operate on the same frequency, allowing seemless reception in the car all along the coast, from St Tropez to Monaco.

(World Radio Paris) Read more


Fête de la Radio 2024 announced - 6 and 7 June
22.03.2024 - France France
The Fête de la Radio organising committee is delighted to announce the 2024 edition of this iconic event, to be held on 6 and 7 June. This national celebration of radio aims to honour and recognise the intrinsic value of the medium in all its forms: FM, DAB+, web radio, internet, podcasts, and much more. The aim of the Fête de la Radio is twofold: to celebrate the resilience and innovation of radio through the ages, and to encourage reflection on its future in our digital society. By highlighting the values of radio, such as localness, accessibility and diversity, we want to strengthen the links between radio stations and their listeners, while exploring new ways of enriching and to enrich and extend the radio experience in the digital age.

(Fête de la Radio) Read more


Africa Radio reinvents a lifeline
18.03.2024 - France France
Paris-based Africa Radio is a lifeline for France’s African diaspora and a critical link in profiling Africa in the country, offering total immersion in African culture, music and information. It has three FM frequencies covering the Île-de-France region and 17 DAB+ frequencies serving the country’s major cities, including Lille, Lyon, Marseille, Nice, Strasbourg and Toulouse. Last year, Africa Radio became part of the radio division of the La Manche Libre media group. Jean-Baptiste Bancaud, managing director of the group’s Normandy-based station Tendance Ouest, took over the helm of Africa Radio on July 1, with Maÿlis Leclerc de Sonis, general manager. In this interview, Bancaud discusses the change of ownership and the group’s vision and plans for Africa Radio.

(RedTech) Read more


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    WorldDAB centre stage at events in 2024

    31.01.2024

    It’s another packed year of amazing industry events around the world. We start this year with Paris Radio Show, from 6 February. Plus we hope to see you at our own WorldDAB Automotive 2024, which we’re delighted to announce this year will be in the beautiful city of Prague on 13 June.

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    Paris Radio Show highlights DAB+ growth

    16.06.2022

    All parts of the French radio industry came together to celebrate the medium at the second edition of the Fete de la Radio during the Paris Radio Show, held at La Seine Musicale earlier this month. Will Jackson & Jean-Marc Dubreuil look back at the digital radio highlights of the event.

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    Major new milestone for DAB+ in France on 12 October

    06.10.2021

    Seven years after the commercial launch of DAB+ in Paris, Nice and Marseille, a major step change in the deployment of DAB+ in France takes place on 12 October 2021. 25 national radios stations (19 commercial, 6 public) will launch, covering the major motorway corridors of Paris-Lyon-Marseille.

    Read more

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Key Information

Status: regular
Population: 65.2 million
Population coverage: Sparkline Graph 54.8%
Services: 460 DAB+
Line-fit automotive sales (cumulative): 6,346,000 devices
New cars with DAB/DAB+ as standard: Sparkline Graph 98%
Total Sales (cumulative): 8,394,000 devices
Penetration by household: Sparkline Graph 13.7%
Last update: 26.02.2024

Useful Links

DAB+ services on air in France
Annuaire des radios Françaises en AM, FM et RNT
Regulator - ARCOM
Call for application for 2 multiplexes covering main roads
DAB+ in France - interactive map
DAB+ regulation in France
dabplus.fr