A headless radio adventure
The Swedish Government's proposal to allow public service radio to go DAB+ and "switch-off" FM 2022 has met an indifferent or a very negative response in Swedish newspaper editorials and op-eds. It is very difficultnot possible to find any supportive opinion regarding the choice of the DAB-system in media. Here is some opinion.
Have you ever heard of the shift from 3G to 4G and around the corner the 5G technology? The transition from FM to the web will manage for itself when times come. But to scrap FM in order to force everyone to buy a DAB receiver is headless writes chief editor Christian Dahlgren in Corren major daily in Norrköping.
License to kill your radio headlines Gotland Allehanda noting that 20 million FM receivers will be useless and worthless. The chief editor Mats Linder reminds us of Internet radio and writes that the government is trying to digitalize a steam engine.
DAB - digitally, expensive and stupid, writes Ulrika Stahre in evening tabloid Aftonbladet. The Ministry of Culture has to explain why 20-30 million fully functioning FM receivers should go to the scrap heap while web radio listening is increasing. How the benefits with DAB+ should beat the drawbacks is a great, great mystery. Switch-off the project, not FM.
In Sweden's no 1 daily Dagens Nyheter in his op-ed Emanuel Karlsten asks if it is defensible to create steam radio in a digital dress for 2022 based on old fashioned system of program scheduled listening which already today is on the decrease. People are today search for program they want and listen when they want. I don't think many will be thankful for this when their kitchen radio will be transformed into a bookend.
Cathastropically miserable, says Patrik Fältström, one of Sweden's most wellknown IT experts in an interview in the magazine Computer Sweden. His most critical points are that 1) the government says that Sweden should have a standalone terrestrial network for digital radio and 2) the choice of DAB. It would be better to broadcast radio over the terrestrial television network (DTT) and develop radio technically in the mobile networks. Start with the infrastructure already in place.
Fältström points out that the government has not presented a complete economical analysis for this project. If it will become a economical fiasco the government will have to foot the bill. He says that one explanation for the choice of DAB is that some individuals have put so much prestige into DAB that it is too late for them to change their minds. The DAB technology is miserable. Even a low-cost mp3-player provides a better sound than DAB, says Fältström.