The Swiss Times - Swiss News in English

Four fifths of listeners use digital radio

80% of listeners used digital radio in 2023. FM radio was still most frequently listened to in the car at 33%, but digital use predominated there too. 63% of radio use took place at home.

The digital radio audience has been growing continuously since 2015, as reported by the Federal Office of Communications (OFCOM) on Friday. Usage via DAB+ almost doubled from 23% to 41% in 2023. 39% listened to radio via IP (2015: 26%).

French-speaking Switzerland preferred reception via IP with 41%. In German-speaking Switzerland, reception via DAB+ predominated with 43%. 45% of the population listened exclusively to digital radio, 10% exclusively via FM. 31% used both. Twelve percent of the population never listened to the radio.

As a result, digital radio usage stabilized at a high level, according to Bakom. As new cars are equipped with DAB+ as standard, in-car use will also increasingly be digital.

Grace period for FM

In October, the Federal Council extended the FM radio licenses for the radio industry for the last time until the end of 2026, after which radio stations can only be broadcast digitally.

This gives radio stations the flexibility they want to complete the migration from analog to digital broadcasting. However, they can also end analog broadcasting earlier. Originally, FM should have been switched off at the end of 2024.

Ultra-short waves (VHF) are electromagnetic waves in a frequency range of 30 to 300 megahertz (MHz), which corresponds to wavelengths between ten meters and one meter.


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