Norway will become the first country in the world to abandon the FM radio frequency, informs CNN.
All radio FM stations will cease broadcasting on those frequencies starting this week and the process will be completed by the end of 2017, according to governmental sources.
North European country will move from the FM radio broadcasting to the digital spectrum – called DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting) – as digital options provide more channels, better sound quality, but also allows suppliers to make savings.
‘The main reason for Norway is the first country to drop this frequency, is due to Norwegian landscape with deep fjords, high mountains and scattered communities’, showed representatives of the Government in a statement. ‘This makes the Norwegian FM broadcasts to be very expensive compared to other countries’, they stated.
The government estimates that radio stations will save 200 million kronor ($ 23,5 million) per year by giving up the FM broadcast, allowing them to invest funds in the content.
The transition from analog to digital comes after more than a decade of planning at a governmental level and the authorities did not expect this measure to affect the existing jobs, adds CNN.
Only small, local radio stations will be exempted from this law and they will be able to broadcast in FM as usual.
In Norway there are no radio stations broadcasting in AM.
According to those who oppose this measure, the transition from analogue to digital will make about two million cars no longer have access to radio – which could be dangerous regarding the safety, as critics claim. The Association of local radio stations in Norway – Norsk Lokalradioforbund – warned about the financial impact felt by consumers, who will have to purchase new radios.
Other countries will also take into account adopting such a measure, so the consequences of the Norwegian approach will be closely monitored, says CNN.