DAB+ digital radio – the most affordable way to broadcast radio

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New research presented by Arqiva at IBC 2019 compares the costs for broadcast radio using three different transmission platforms – FM, DAB+ and IP.

The findings show that DAB+ leads as the most cost-efficient platform for radio.


Methodology

The following assumptions were made:

  • For FM costs used included the annual cost for renting a transmitter and annual studio-to-transmitter circuit costs
  • For DAB+, the multiplex and transmission costs for an 8 site DAB network, shared between 25 DAB+ services with the cost of studio to multiplex circuits
  • ‘IP streaming’ was defined as anyone listening to the radio at home over broadband/Wi-Fi, or on their mobile phone over a 3G/4G mobile phone network with wide area coverage

Three different scenarios were laid out to compare the three distribution channels, taking into account differences in Gigabyte shifted pricing – ranging from £0.02 to £0.04 – as well as different levels of reach, which ranged from 5% to 7%.


Findings

The findings of the study were as follows:

  • Scenario 1 – £0.02 per Gbyte shifted, 5% reach
    DAB transmissions cost 1/3 of the price of FM
    IP transmissions cost 1.4 times more than DAB
  • Scenario 2 – £0.04 Gbyte shifted, 5% reach
    DAB transmissions cost 1/3 of the price of FM
    IP transmissions cost 2.5 times more than DAB
  • Scenario 3 – £0.04 Gbyte shifted, 7% reach
    DAB transmissions cost 1/3 of the price of FM
    FM and IP transmissions are equal in cost
    IP transmissions cost 3.3 times more than DAB


Conclusion

FM is the most expensive distribution channel, standing at £0.00105 per hour.

IP provided the second most expensive distribution channel, costing £0.00047 per hour
of distribution.

DAB+ was deemed to be the most affordable means of distribution, standing at
£0.00033 per hour.

For more information, please see the full study here.

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Information

This entry was posted on October 14, 2019 by in WorldDAB Project Office.

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