Norway

Last update: 27-06-2018 - older versions

In December 2017, Norway became the first country to completely switch off national FM services, completeing a year-long process of switching off region by region. 

99.7% of the population has access to DAB+ reception with almost 6 million receivers sold to date.

The switchover process started in January 2017 applied to all national radio stations and commercial local radio stations broadcasting in larger cities. Community radio and smaller local radio stations will continue to broadcast on FM for five more years after national switch off, at which point licences will be reviewed.

Early listening figures show that listeners have followed to digital, with the first regions to switch off FM services close to returning to pre-switchover levels of listening. 

 

Norwegian Media Authority - webpage on the Digital Switchover

The full story of Norway's DSO and results so far - presented at Radiodays Europe 2018 (in English)

 

Last update: 09-01-2017 - older versions

In Norway, 99.5% of the population has access to DAB reception. Public broadcaster NRK has 99.5% population coverage. Commercial stations have 92.8% coverage.

DAB network covers the same percentage of the population as the largest FM-network, and the commercial network reaches out to a large population. Tunnels have DAB-coverage from 2016, and all tunnels that require FM-coverage, will be equipped with DAB. All new tunnels longer than 500m will have DAB.

Contrary to FM, where only a few channels have tunnel coverage, all channels on air outside.

416 tunnels will have DAB by 2020, however most will be completed by 2017. The coverage area for DAB is equal to or better than the FM-network.

A coverage map can be found on the Digitalradio Norge website. (Enter address or choose postal zipcode and your requested channel, and the map will show the coverage of the relevant area. An orange colour indicates strong signals.)

A video showing some of the challenges of building a DAB network covering all of Norway`s challenging topography can be seen on the "Hva er digitalradio?" website.

Last update: 07-07-2017 - older versions

In this country there are

on air.

A full listing of the services on air in Norway is available at http://radio.no/dekning/#networks. There are 23 nation-wide channels, 9 commercial and 14 public.

NRK's stations are mainly distributed through their own regionalised DAB-network, though a few stations are temporarily distributed through the commercial DAB-network.

There are also 7 local networks in operation in Norway. In the Oslo area 18 channels are available, in addition to the national networks.

In the national and regional networks, both DAB and DAB+ are transmitted. By 2017, all stations will most probably transmit in DAB+. The local DAB-networks utilise DAB+ only.

Slideshow

NRK broadcasts Slideshow (SLS) on all of its stations except for the low bitrate weather station. The slideshows contain images of album covers, djs, trafic information, news bulletins, as well as images from RSS feeds, Instagram images and text, facebook images and text.

 

Both P4 and Bauer radio groups broadcast Slideshow on their DAB services as well.

TPEG traffic data

NRK launched TPEG service 7 July 2017, transmitting over NRK's DAB network with a coverage of 99.5% of the population in Norway. Made possible by using the open traffic data made available by the Norwegian Public Roads Administration, it's transmitted as TEC with RDS TMC and/or GLR locations. OpenLR is expected to be available soon as well.

The service is completely free to air, and NRK encourages manufacturers of receivers to make use of the data when possible. For interested parties NRK has example files available for testing, both as TPEG-binary and DAB ETI files.  DAB ETI files will also be available in the WorldDAB ETI Library shortly.

For coverage information, please check: https://radio.no/dekning/  (select "NRK" and "Basisdekning" to show coverage in car).

For any details, questions, comments, errors etc, please contact at tpeg@nrk.no.

The regional multiplexes (NRK)

NRK has 7 regional multiplexes, adding up to a nationally covering network that reach 99.5% of the population. NRK has 14 services in total, 10 of which are currently in the regional network. (4 are temporarily placed in the commercial network). 2 out of these 10 share one channel-slot, sharing the day between them. The main channel, NRK P1, and the digital-only station P1+, have localised content in each region some parts of the day. In each region there are 2 or 3 local versions of these stations (each region covers 2 or 3 counties). The other stations are similar across the country.

The commercial network

The commercial network has a coverage of 92.8% and contains 9 commercial services and (temporarily) 4 NRK services.

The local networks

In Norway, there are 37 regions for local DAB transmissions. An overview of the regions and the frequencies used can be found here. One operator is given licence in each region, and this operator must offer DAB-capacity openly, and at equal terms to all stations. In March 2016, licences for 18 of these regions were awarded for the period of Jan 1st 2017 - December 31st, 2031. 

Today, 6 local DAB networks are in operation, under a licence that will expire Dec 31st, 2016. The number of available stations is different by region. In the Oslo area there are 14 local DAB stations as of March 2016. 

Simulcast on AM / FM Exclusive on digital Total of services
DAB programmes 1 1 2
DAB+ programmes 20 193 213
Total21194215

Last update: 15-02-2018 - older versions

By November 2017 49% of all Norwegian private cars had a DAB+ radio (Digital radio survey, Kantar Media). With the announcement of FM switch off in 2017, the main in-car focus is on the market for adaptors and retro-fit digital radios, to ensure these are as widely available as possible.

The proposed strategy is to install DAB radios into as many cars as possible before the FM shutdown, making adaptors available through traditional and non-traditional car accessory sales channels. A key element in the strategy is to offer DAB adaptor installation at the same time as periodic vehicle-controls.

Before the switch off 60% of drivers who did not have DAB in the car said they would wait to upgrade when the FM network is extinguished.

When asked what they plan to do with their old FM radios, 41% of car owners without DAB said that they want to upgrade to a DAB adapter or a new radio. 11% reported that they are replacing their car before FM is extinguished. 10% want to wait until they get more knowledge about how to fix it. As many as 26% do not know or did not answer what they would do. Read more.

 

Last update: 06-04-2017 - older versions

DAB sales penetration by population in Norway is 72% by household. Sales of DAB receivers including in-car products, have been increasing steadily since their introduction into the market in 2009 when 63,000 were sold, compared to the 667,000 units sold in 2014.

Units sold

2009 - 63,000

2010 - 82,000

2011 - 135,000

2012 - 220,000

2013 - 511,000

2014 – 667,000

 

Last update: 15-10-2014 - older versions

Norway’s three leading broadcasters, NRK, TV2 and MTG, jointly run mobile TV services via DMB. MiniTV trials began in the Oslo area in 2009 with live TV channels, on demand content and other related services. Today 4 TV-channels are available on MiniTV. A software based solution for pay-tv, provided by Korean DigiCap, is also on trial on the DMB networks.

Last update: 09-01-2017 - older versions

Key features of regulation for digital radio in Norway are:

  • Digital radio services are broadcast on Band III
  • All major FM-channels are broadcast on DAB
  • Broadcasting in Norway is regulated according to the Broadcasting Act/Law which gives NRK the right to broadcast nationally. Licences for the commercial broadcasters have been issued up to 2014.There is one national DAB multiplex in use today, seven regional ones (with total coverage corresponding to the national multiplex) plus 6 local multiplexes. One DMB multiplex is in use in the greater Oslo area (trial).The regional multiplexes are operated by NRK, and together they have a total coverage of 99.5%. This coverage is similar to the coverage of the national multiplex.
  • The commercial multiplex uses 12D for the entire country
  • There are also other multiplexes regulated for use in Norway including an additional commercial national mux, using 11A and 12A

Analogue radio switch-off is planned for 2017 as the following switchover criteria has been met:

  1. NRK must achieve coverage of 99.5% by 2015.
  2. Commercial broadcasters on the national network #1 are required to reach 90% of the population
  3. At least 50% of listeners must daily use a digital platform in 2015. Digital platforms also include listening via the Internet and digital TV. This does not specify market share of listening, but only reach.
  4. The solutions for Digital radio in cars must be at an economically and technically satisfactory level for consumers. All counties and half of all municipalities must have established services for aftermarked-service in 2015.
  5. Digital radio to constitute an added value for the listeners

Last update: 27-06-2018 - older versions

Information to the public is co-ordinated, and partly performed, by Digitalradio Norway which is owned by public broadcaster NRK, P4 Group and Bauer Media.

Ongoing campaigns to inform the public about the transition to broadcast digital radio have mainly used the radio as their medium. These have frequently been on air on commercial radio stations and on NRK's radio and TV-channels. Digitalradio Norway also operates www.radio.no, which includes news, DAB coverage maps, how-to articles and videos, as well  as information about the growing DAB channel selection in Norway. Digitalradio Norway also uses promoters whose role is to visit car and electronic dealers and advise on DAB and assist on any marketing activities.

To encourage commercial companies to maximise their efforts in promoting digital radio, commercial radio broadcasters offer copromotion opportunities, with on-air DAB-related campaigns which have proven to be very effective in increasing the awareness of DAB with consumers. The main focus is on ensuring availability of DAB in-car adaptors and securing a network of competent installers, and this focus is reflected in marketing and information activities.

 

 

Link to information films, broadcast on NRK and commercial TV-station. http://radio.no/digitalisering/utvider-radiotilbudet/ (in norwegian).

Information film about digital radio

Mythbuster webpage

Myths and mistakes continue to emerge in the discussion of DAB. On this page Digitalradio Norway collected the facts. 

 

Last update: 27-06-2018 - older versions

All relevant tunnels in Norway  have DAB-coverage. Contrary to FM, where only a few channels have tunnel coverage, all channels on the outside of a tunnel will be available also on the inside.

In an emergency situation, the Road Authorities will be able to transmit messages on all DAB stations broadcast into the tunnel, from the outside of the tunnel or from the operations central.  This will effectively mean a higher security for all travellers in road tunnels, as messages will reach all radio listeners - not only those listening to a specific channel. In Norway there are approximately 260 road tunnels with broadcasting integrated today. At FM shutoff all of these will have DAB and accordingly all new tunnels longer than 500 meters with annual traffic over 5000 vehicles. 

Jon Branæs from NRK comments on DAB+ listening in Norway
WorldDAB Members News - 06.07.2018 - Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK) - Norway - Norway
On average, 2.7 million Norwegians listened to at least one of NRK's radio stations during a week in June. Looking at total broadcast listening the decline has been as we expected – and this is because people need time to replace all of their FM devices, especially in cars.
From Aftenposten:

Sahaga POP 3.0 approved by Norway's Personal Injury Association
15.06.2018 - Norway - Norway
Norway's road safety authority has given its mark of approval to the Sahaga POP 3.0 DAB+ receiver, for its easy-to-use interface that minimises driver attention away from the road. The Personal Injury Association have signed an agreement with Sahaga that will ensure proceeds go to the association from from each sold receiver.
From Sahaga:

DAB+ radios: stereo in the bookshelf
WorldDAB Members News - 09.06.2018 - Pure - Norway - Norway
Featuring Hama DIR3500MCBT, Yamaha TSX-B235D, Pure Evoke C-F6, Como Audio Musica, Technics Ottava f SC-C70 and Ruark R4 mk III
From Dagens Naeringsliv:

Norway's FM shutdown - six months on
WorldDAB Members News - 06.06.2018 - Digitalradio Norge AS - Norway - Norway
Radio World speaks to Digital Radio Norway's Ole Jørgen Torvmark six months after Norway's successful digital switchover. Torvmark cites greater consumer choice across a wider coverage area, plus steady listening figures as examples of how the switchover has worked in Norway.
From Radio World:

2017: a record year for DAB receiver sales
15.05.2018 - United Kingdom - United Kingdom - Australia - Australia - Belgium - Belgium - Denmark - Denmark - Norway - Norway - Netherlands - Netherlands - Switzerland - Switzerland - Italy - Italy - France - France - Germany - Germany
Almost 12 million DAB receivers were sold in 2017 in Europe and Asia Pacific, a new record for yearly sales. Almost half (5.9m) of the sales were for automotive devices, with key markets showing a significant increase in the number of cars sold with DAB fitted as standard.
From WorldDAB:

DAB+ stations captures a third of Norwegian radio audience
07.05.2018 - Norway - Norway
Just three months after the shutdown of FM in Norway, a survey of listeners conducted by the Norwegian radio industry and Kantar Media, shows that the new digital stations have captured nearly a third of total radio listening.
From La Lettre Pro:

2018 Nissan Leaf
28.04.2018 - Norway - Norway
The top model, Tekna, is packed with most of what you need. For example, it includes leather interior, full LED light, Bose system with DAB radio, the largest infotainment system, 17 "alloy wheels and intelligent cruise control - including crash assistant and file holder.
From TV2:

GatesAir ships transmitters to Norway to support DAB transition
WorldDAB Members News - 25.04.2018 - GatesAir - Norway - Norway
GatesAir is getting ready to send its final shipments of transmitters to Norway, bringing the total of its transmitters deployed in that country to 1218 in support of Norway’s transition to DAB.
From Radio Magazine:

GatesAir ships more transmitters to Norway
WorldDAB Members News - 25.04.2018 - GatesAir - Norway - Norway - United States - United States
GatesAir is getting ready to send its final shipments of transmitters to Norway, bringing the total of its transmitters deployed to 1218 in support of Norway's transition to DAB. GatesAir says it has been involved in Norway’s DAB digital radio activity since the nation’s first tests in 1994.
From Radio World:

NRK: more than four out of five Norwegians listen to digital radio
WorldDAB Members News - 20.04.2018 - Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK) - Norway - Norway
The use of digital radio is increasing steadily, and by 2017, 86 percent hear digital radio daily. Digital radio listening includes PC / Mac, mobile radio, tablet, internet radio, DAB radio and DAB radio in car (including adapter), DAB pocket radio and digital TV receiver.
From NRK:

Select Country:

Key Information

Status: regular
Population: 5.1 million
Population coverage: Sparkline Graph 99.7%
Services: 2 DAB, 213 DAB+
New cars with DAB/DAB+ as standard: Sparkline Graph 98%
Total Sales (cumulative): 5,600,000 devices
Penetration by household: Sparkline Graph 83%
Last update: 17.05.2018

Useful Links

P4 – largest commercial radio group
Digital Radio Norway
Medietllsynet – Norwegian Media Authorities
NRK - public broadcaster in Norway
Norwegian proposal on the digitization of radio
Ministry of Culture – announcement of digitazation in 2017