Patrick Hannon, President, WorldDAB
This year was, in my view, our best General Assembly yet.
It was certainly the biggest, with around 250 delegates joining us in Paris representing 34 different countries – showing the impressive reach of DAB around the world.
Before the event I outlined three key themes for this year:
We heard Nicolas Curien, from French regulator, the CSA (Conseil Supérieur de l’Audiovisuel), announce a significant acceleration of DAB+ in France. Licences for Lyon and Strasbourg are due to be issued by the end of the month, while DAB+ services in the Hauts de France region will start in March or April next year. The CSA also announced it is accelerating the schedule for local and regional deployment – overall one of the most significant announcements we’ve heard at a General Assembly.
The acceleration of DAB in France will provide a significant boost to rollouts internationally and we heard encouraging stories from across Europe; from countries looking at digital switchover through to those rolling out new networks and extending coverage. In particular, it was good to hear from the next wave of markets and to see them taking inspiration from the success of DAB elsewhere. With over 60 million receivers now sold worldwide, DAB has clearly established itself as the future radio standard of choice for Europe and beyond.
On day two we heard from the Norwegian regulator, commercial and public broadcasters and the Radio.no team, on the lessons learned so far from the digital switchover process. The close collaboration between all interested parties is an inspiration and a great example of what can be achieved.
DAB continues to make impressive progress and, in just a week since the General Assembly, we’ve seen positive news on the second German multiplex and from Italy, where RAS has received government approval to switch off its VHF transmitters in the South Tyrol region.
My thanks to all of those who attended, exhibited or presented this year and helped make the event a success. For more information on the event take a look at the links below: