Norway is the first country to do away with the FM stations. According to the officials, the main reasons are the increasing costs involved in maintaining the FM network coverage. The deep fjords, mountain ranges and scattered settlement pattern make it really expensive to continue to operate the FM network. As per Norway’s culture minister, Linda C. Hofstad-Helleland, they will be moving over to make the transition to Digital Audio Broadcasting by 2017. This proposal was placed in 2011. When shifting to DAB, it is estimated that the transmission costs will be reduced by eight times than it was for FM transmission.
Contrary to the popular belief, listeners will benefit more from the change. They will be able to enjoy more pluralistic radio-content. They will have access to a more diverse range of programs and will experience better sound quality and functionality as well. The DAB network is more advanced and technologically upgraded. It will allow around 40 national channels, including the existing 22 which are already in use, whereas FM had only 5 National channels.
The objections raised were perhaps based on the fact that people would lose their jobs and the remaining uncertainty. However as the officials have pointed out, it is time to accept change. Moreover, the cut down in expenditure is also a great reason to accept radio digitalization. The population coverage of DAB network is also far better than that of the FM network. More citizens would be able to enjoy the facilities if DAB network comes into existence. As per reliable sources, from 2017 onwards, People living in sparsely populated parts will be able to enjoy all the channels being broadcasted. Presently they can enjoy only a single channel.
Listeners are also getting to choose which digital radio technology they wish to use. In addition to all this, Internet Radio also will function well. To summarize, the People of Norway are in for a full ride to all the broadcasting channels and shows shortly.