Switzerland

Last update: 28.08.2020 - older versions

Public broadcaster SSR SRG operates one platform in each of the four regions of the country. There are transmitter networks for private radio stations in German-speaking Switzerland (SwissMediaCast) and in French-speaking Switzerland (Romandie Médias SA).

Digital switchover

In August 2020, DigiMig (the digital migration working group) announced that the phase-off of FM services would take place in two stages between August 2022 (SRG) and January 2023 (private stations).

Listening figures

Digital radio use in Switzerland increased from 49% in autumn 2015 to 71% in Spring 2020. 39% of all listening is via DAB+.

DAB+ is now the most widely used radio distribution channel, claiming 39% of all listening.

 

Last update: 15.04.2020 - older versions

Digital radio on DAB+ in Switzerland reaches over 99% of the population (outdoor 99%, indoor over 96%). 99% of the roads are covered, including high way tunnels.  

The latest commissioning is published as news on www.broadcast.ch.

Further resources on DAB+ coverage in Switzerland

Broadcast.ch Reception Card

Reception in Switzerland

SwissMediaCast Coverage Maps

 

 

Last update: 13.07.2016 - older versions

In this country there are

on air.

The original four multiplexes are run by the public broadcaster SRG SSR. The first commercial DAB+ multiplex which was launched on 13 October 2009 now broadcasts 14 commercial radio stations and three public radio stations in the German-speaking part of Switzerland. A second commercial DAB+ multiplex started in December 2012 in the German speaking part with 13 commercial and 3 public radio stations and a first regional commercial DAB+ multiplex in the French speaking part with 13 commercial and two public radio stations started at the end of 2013. A local multiplex (Geneva region) started in May 2014 with 12 commercial and non-profit radio stations and a second local multiplex started in Zurich in August 2014.

For an up to date list of services on air please visit http://www.broadcast.ch/data_program_dab.aspx

SlideShow

Most stations use slideshow. The website http://www.dab-swiss.ch/html/programme.html has an excel list with more details.

Simulcast on AM / FM Exclusive on digital Total of services
DAB programmes 6 9 15
DAB+ programmes 80 41 121
Total8650136

Last update: 28.08.2020 - older versions

91% of new cars in Switzerland now with DAB+ as standard

OFCOM surveys show that the proportion of new vehicles in which DAB+ reception is fitted as standard rose sharply again in 2018 and is now over 91%. This means that the requirement that will apply in the European Union from the end of 2020, whereby every new passenger vehicle must be DAB+-capable, has almost already been met in Switzerland. 

In 2019, it estimated that around 315.000 new cars equipped with DAB+ radio were sold.


DAB+ now the most popular form of reception in cars

In cars, DAB+ has also taken over from FM as the principal means of receiving radio broadcasts. Among motorists, reception of transmissions via DAB+ or internet radio now accounts for 55 percent of total usage.

 

 

Last update: 12.02.2020 - older versions

Digital radio usage now 68%, with DAB+ the most widely used radio reception method

At the end of 2019, use  of digital radio by Swiss citizens averaged 64 minutes per 100 radio minutes per day. Of this figure, 37% was accounted for by DAB+, making it the most widely used radio reception method.

Over 600,000 DAB+ radios sold in 2019

In 2019, nearly 300,000 DAB+ radios were sold, plus around 315,000 new cars equipped with DAB+ radio.

For further information and key stats please visit: 

https://www.bakom.admin.ch/bakom/en/homepage/electronic-media/technology/digital-transmission/dab-plus-is-now-the-most-widely-used-radio-reception-method.html

Last update: 28.08.2020 - older versions

Digital switchover

At the SwissRadioDay on 27 August 2020, the digital migration working group ‘AG DigiMig’ announced that – owing to positive signs from the market and to the trend in listener numbers – the radio industry is planning to press ahead with the deactivation of FM services.

In an industry agreement signed a few days earlier, it was agreed that SRG would decommission its FM transmitters in August 2022 to make it easier for commercial operators to switch over.

The private radio stations are then due to deactivate their FM transmitters in January 2023. The Verband Schweizer Privatradios (VSP), the Union Romande des Radios Régionales (RRR) and the Union nicht-gewinnorientierter Lokalradios (Unikom) are requesting the approval of their members by end-November 2020.

If a majority of radio broadcasters as defined by AG DigiMig agree to the proposals put forward by these associations, the FM phase-out plan will become binding for all broadcasters. SRG has already agreed to the decommissioning proposal.

Key features of regulation for digital radio in Switzerland are:

  • Band III
  • National multiplexes
  • All stations are on DAB+
  • In 2013 stand-alone Band III ensembles were authorised by the regulator in the main conurbations, intended as a DAB+ platform for the smaller, non-commercial broadcasters
  • On December 1st 2014 radio market players presented to the regulator a detailed digital switch over plan
  • In 2016, it was decided that all services in the future should be DAB+
  • OFCOM holds the spectrum licence
  • In mid-February 2012, OFCOM awarded a broadcast licence to Romandie Médias SA to operate a further DAB+ network in French-speaking Switzerland. The new platform, which has a capacity of up to 18 DAB+ stations, went on air in April 2014.
  • The SRG licence includes the operation of a DAB multiplex and transmission network in Band III. The transmitter sites are operated by Swisscom Broadcast, but SRG is responsible for the planning of the network, signal generating and multiplexing.

 

 

Last update: 05.05.2020 - older versions

Over the past few years, a number of campaigns have launched in Switzerland on national TV and radio, to help promote DAB+ and inform listeners, drivers and consumers of the benefits of digital radio.

 Current campaign

In order to encourage listeners to switch to digital reception at home and in the car, a multi-year information campaign was launched on 4 May 2020. It is intended to support the audience with information and assistance during the upcoming FM phase-out. The campaign will include TV and radio spots, social media activities, out-of-home advertising, measures for equipment dealers and car dealerships, plus a helpdesk to advise the public. The campaign will run until the final FM switch-off.

Previous campaigns

 

 

 

Last update: 08.04.2019 - older versions

Switzerland is also a pioneer in DAB/DAB+ tunnel rebroadcast systems. There are currently eight tunnels equipped and the plan is to cover up to 200 tunnels using 100 head ends and 1,000 transmitting sites. Emergency voice break-in, signal levels, system design and interfaces are also going to be specified. 

The emergency alerting system in Switzerland for disasters today primarily relies on sirens (for “wake-up”) and Swiss Radio (for delivering the information). Swiss Radio currently broadcasts via VHF as well as via DAB+. Information can also be displayed on TV on banners and teletext, although this was only used once so far. In addition to this, cantons and municipalities are free to add their own channels for their official information (e.g., Twitter or Facebook).

In the next years, additional channels will be added. As of 2018, emergency alerts, warnings and information will also be published via the smartphone App “Alertswiss”, and the Website www.alertswiss.ch . As of 2019, further channels shall be added.

Regarding DAB+ in particular, the Federal Office for Civil Protection (FOCP) has undertaken different technical assessments and studies. Swiss Post, in collaboration with FOCP, has developed and successfully tested a prototype of a smart letterbox display that can show governmental information in case of an emergency. This information can be transmitted via DAB+. See also: https://youtu.be/kfTu4C7G3-Y

Swiss listeners increasingly opting for DAB+
28.08.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
39% of listening in Switzerland now takes place on DAB+, while 64% of all listening is done on digital platforms. Digital radio is also more popular than FM radio amongt Swiss drivers, claiming 55% of all listening.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


DAB expected to replace FM in Switzerland by early 2023
28.08.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
According to the latest plan revealed by Swiss broadcasters at Swiss RadioDay the phase-off of FM services will take place in stages - starting with SRG switchoff of FM services in August 2022, which will then be followed by private radio stations in January 2023.

(CE Today) Read more


New Swiss information campaign prepares for the phase-out of FM
28.08.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
The campaign will include TV and radio spots, social media activities, billboard advertising, measures for equipment dealers and car dealerships, plus a helpdesk to advise the public

(Ofcom Switzerland) Read more


Swiss radio stations plan to phase out FM broadcasting in 2022/2023
28.08.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
At the SwissRadioDay, the radio sector presented its planned phase-out of FM transmissions, which is to take place between August 2022 (SRG) and January 2023 (private stations). Digital listening in Switzerland now stands at 71%.

(Ofcom Switzerland) Read more


Homorous social media advert goes live in Switzerland
10.08.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
A new DAB+ marketing campaign has launched in Switzerland, where a digital switchover is set to take place by 2024. The campaign, which encourages listeners to purchase a DAB+ receiver, emphasises the quality offered by DAB+ digital radio.

(dabplus.ch) Read more


Switzerland inches closer to FM switchoff
21.07.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
Switzerland is embarking on the next phase of its digital radio switchover strategy. In May René Wehrlin, media specialist at Switzerland’s Federal Office of Communications (Ofcom) announced the next steps toward the country’s total transition to DAB+.

(Radio World) Read more


New courses for DAB+ vehicle integration available in Switzerland
01.07.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
DAB+ training certificates are available to automotive professionals in Switzerland wishing to obtain formal qualifications in regards to DAB+. The one day course focuses on a number of topics including DAB+ network structure, standards, antenna technology and installation.

(Moto.ch) Read more


New DAB+ campaign goes live in Switzerland
26.05.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
A new DAB+ campaign has gone live in Switzerland, ahead of the country's planned switchoff of DAB+ services. The campaign, which includes TV and radio spots, is set to inform consumers of the benefits of DAB+, and prepare them for the upcoming digital switchover, set to take place by 2024 at the latest.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


Switzerland prepares listeners for FM switch off
21.05.2020 - Switzerland Switzerland
Watch this week’s virtual presentation by René Wehrlin at Swiss media regulator OFCOM with the latest on DAB+ in Switzerland, where broadcasters are gearing up to switch off FM by no later than in 2024 – and possibly earlier.

(WorldDAB) Read more


On its 70th anniversary, EBU maintains initial vision
05.05.2020 - European Broadcasting Union (EBU) WorldDAB Member - Switzerland Switzerland
In this article, the EBU's Graham Dixon discusses the past and future of radio in Europe. He argues that while the history of DAB radio remains to be written, it is already clear that it has provided broadcasters in many countries with the freedom to develop new channels, and serve more hard-to-reach audiences of specific interest groups.

(Radio World) Read more


Select Country:

Key Information

Status: regular
Population: 8.1 million
Population coverage: Sparkline Graph 99.5%
Services: 15 DAB, 121 DAB+
New cars with DAB/DAB+ as standard: Sparkline Graph 91%
Total Sales (cumulative): 4,297,000 devices
Last update: 16.12.2019

Useful Links

dabplus.ch
Swissmediacast.ch
Digimig DSO papers (in English)
Broadcast.ch