A too expensive step with an already strong Internet presence
The media authority National Electronic Mass Media Council (NEPLP) has evaluated the results of the DAB + standard test of digital sound terrestrial broadcasting in the region of Riga, carried out by the State Radio and Television and decided not to continue this testing, nor to support the introduction of digital sound broadcasting DAB + in Latvia for the next five years. NEPLP has been taking into account a number of aspects, including the long-term effectiveness of the standard in question, the benefits to society of the costs of implementing this standard, as well as the potential impact on Latvian broadcasters and the advertising market.
Latvia is one of the few countries in the world, where it has successfully managed to implement a wide range of Internet coverage now, and there is also targeted preparation for the introduction of both 5G mobile Internet and broadband Internet. The already available Internet technologies enable the development of various types of audio channels and content products for radio stations, while the introduction of the DAB + standard will require millions of euros in investment from taxpayers' money and will oblige consumers to replace radio receivers, explains Patrick Gray, a member of the NEPLP.
Read the NEPLP statement Nov 30, 2017
Today the Baltic countries are ranked among the top nations regarding ICT and Internet usage.
In the Baltic-Nordic region presently there are only DAB broadcasting on a regular basis in Denmark and Norway. There are no such DAB broadcasting in Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, Finland and Sweden. Test transmission has been carried out in Estonia and in Sweden ongoing test transmissions since 1995. Finland permanently rejected DAB already ten years ago.
There is only five countries today with an established DAB presence (i.e national coverage and a considerable listenership); Denmark, Norway, United Kingdom, Switzerland and Australia.
Since 1995 DAB has been broadcast in several other countries on a limited and local basis. There are also countries with full national DAB+ coverage but a few percent listenership as Germany and the Netherlands.
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