It feels like I’ve been hearing about Digital Audio Broadcasting (DAB) since 1995. That’s probably because I have. NRK (our PBS) launched the first DAB-channel that year and today half the population listens to digital radio.
There’s been a strong effort to move listeners from FM to DAB + for a number of years, and the authorities seem to be on track to reach their goal of 68 percent digital listening by 2020. FM broadcasting will slowly disappear from 2020 and it’s supposed to be completely gone from Norway four years later. That will make a lot of radios useless. Why is my government so eager to do this?
There are many conspiracy theorists and others that have offered explanations. I think this is mostly about supporting the automobile industry, and 63 percent of all new cars sold in Norway have a DAB-radio, while there are probably many that also get it installed later. We have been told for years that we need to get rid of our radios. There’s a new kid in town and DAB + is apparently the new sexy.
It’s not true that we have to buy new radios, though. All radio stations, at least in Norway, are available on the internet. You can actually connect a mobile or a computer to the Line In or Aux on you radio, or via bluetooth, so you can still enjoy good sound without buying new equipment. I have often wondered why authorities want to take FM from us, but I don’t think it’s because we need it. I see the advantage in cars and that’s the industry we are helping with this decision. I’ll manage, but I know some old people that will be left with nothing. This decision doesn’t make much sense, but the list of products and lies my government is pushing keeps getting longer.