Switzerland

Last update: 21.02.2020 - older versions

Swiss Ofcom officially confirmed on 29 August 2019 that FM will be switched off in Switzerland by no later than end of 2024.  The DigiMig Working Group confirimed that 65% of radio listening is now digital, 35% of which is via DAB+, and with only 17% of radio listening now exclusively via FM. 

The “Digital Migration” (DigiMig) working group

In spring 2013 the radio industry, together with the Federal Office of Communications (OFCOM), set up the “Digital Migration” working group (DigiMig WG). Within the group are representatives of the Swiss Association of Private Radio (Verband Schweizer Privatradios - VSP), the Union Romande des Radios Régionales (RRR), the union of non-commercial local radios (Unikom), the SRG SSR, OFCOM, the car industry and other industry circles.

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).

Listening figures

Digital radio use in Switzerland increased by 19 percentage points in four years - from 49% in autumn 2015 to 68% in autumn 2019.

DAB+ was also the most widely used radio distribution channel, increasing by 14 percentage points since autumn 2015 and claiming 37% 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: 12.02.2020 - 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 91%, compared with 85% in the previous year. 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.

 

 

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: 16.05.2019 - older versions

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.

Commercial radio and media companies in the German part of Switzerland were granted 8 licences in summer 2007.  SwissMediaCast AG was granted a licence to broadcast on Channel 7D and 9A by Swiss Ofcom (the regulator). SMC AG running the first commercial DAB+ multiplex in German-speaking Switzerland. On 13 May 2019 the Swiss regulatory and licensing body ComCom granted another licence for broadcasting DAB+ services in French-speaking Switzerland to DABCOM AG (IP worldcom / DIGRIS).

From 2020, regional radio stations which cover conurbations should benefit from greater autonomy by no longer being subject to a licensing system including a performance mandate. This proposal is included in the revised Radio and Television Ordinance (RTVO) which the Department of the Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications (DETEC) is putting out for consultation from 16 February 2017. The new text, which deals with radio broadcasting, also paves the way for the transition from FM to DAB+. 

 

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 regulator OFCOM encourages drivers to convert to DAB+
15.04.2019 - Switzerland Switzerland
The Swiss regulator Ofcom advises that while 9 out of 10 new cars now come with DAB+ as standard, there are still 3.5m older vehicles that will need to be converted in time for the imminent switchover from FM to DAB+.

(CE Today) Read more


Digital switchover – Norway listening back to pre-DSO levels, Switzerland DSO on the horizon
04.04.2019 - WorldDAB News - Norway Norway - Switzerland Switzerland
Norway opened the second day of the Radiodays Europe with a presentation titled: ‘Beyond FM – the new normal’, where Ole Jorgen Torvmark, who discussed Norway's successful transition to digital radio, was joined on stage by Arqiva’s Head of New Technology Simon Mason and Iso Reichsteiner, Project Manager of the DSO process in Switzerland.

(WorldDAB) Read more


In-car hyrbid radio - how does it work?
02.04.2019 - Switzerland Switzerland
The automotive manufacturer Audi was present at Radiodays Europe in Lausanne, showcasing RadioDNS technology and how it enables drivers to switch from DAB+ to FM to internet radio in a smooth and seamless way, enabling drivers to listen to their favourite radio stations while on the go.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


EBU's Digital Radio Week helps foster digital radio innovation
19.03.2019 - Switzerland Switzerland
At this year's EBU Digital Radio Summit, Laurence Harrison talked delegates through the updated guidelines for in-car user experience from WorldDAB as well as highlighting what automotive manufacturers need from broadcasters, while ABC's Jeremy Millar touched on how DAB+ listening is growing faster than internet listening, and providing a vital boost to overall listening figures.

(European Broadcasting Union) Read more


Switzerland starts training for installers of automotive aftermarket DAB+ radios
19.03.2019 - Switzerland Switzerland
In order to prepare its members for the post-FM era, the Auto Trade Association of Switzerland (AGVS) will be conducting two certified DAB+ training courses this April. Over the course of the day, attendees will be able to learn about the benefits offered by DAB+, and how to adapt in-car radios to DAB+. It is believed that approximately 3.5 million vehicles in Switzerland will have to be adapted to fit DAB+ capabilities.

(Auto Trade Association Switzerland) Read more


Two thirds of Swiss people listen to radio digitally
11.03.2019 - Switzerland Switzerland
According to the latest figures published by Ofcom,almost two thirds (64%) of all radio listening in Switzerland takes place on digital platforms (DAB+ or internet). Digital radio listening, which has increased by 15 percent over the last three years, accounts for 33 percent of all radio listening in the country.

(Horizont) Read more


Number of DAB+ receivers in Switzerland steadily rising
06.03.2019 - OFCOM Switzerland WorldDAB Member - Switzerland Switzerland
In 2018, 286,200 DAB+ receivers were sold in Switzerland, with another 300,000 in-car DAB+ receivers sold.According to GfK's report, over 4 million DAB+ receivers have been sold since the year 2000.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


Digital Radio Summit 2019 overview
19.02.2019 - European Broadcasting Union (EBU) WorldDAB Member - Switzerland Switzerland
The sessions at the EBU's Digital Radio Summit included a keynote session on the latest developments since the digital switch over in Norway, a number of sessions on the growth of DAB+ in established markets such as Australia and developing markets such as Serbia, as well as two panel discussions on radio in the connected car and the growing popularity of podcasts.

(European Broadcasting Union) Read more


Over four million DAB+ receivers sold in Switzerland
15.02.2019 - Switzerland Switzerland
According to the latest stats released by GfK, 4.2 million DAB+ receivers have been sold in Switzerland in the period leading up to 2018. In 2018, over 280.000 DAB+ receivers were sold, while over 300.000 cars sold Switzerland last year included DAB+.

(La Lettre Pro) Read more


European Broadcasting Union publishes 2019 Digital Radio report
12.02.2019 - European Broadcasting Union (EBU) WorldDAB Member - Switzerland Switzerland
This is the fourth edition of the yearly report that the Media Intelligence Service of the EBU publishes to support the efforts of the EBU, its members and part of the radio industry to transition from analogue to terrestrial to digital terrestrial radio.

(European Broadcasting Union) Read more


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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