Digital Switch Over – Questions Answered


The digital switchover has been scheduled in for 2015. What does this mean for all of us? We answer your questions.

I hear FM will be switched off. Is this correct?

It is planned that digital radio switchover will take place no less than two years after certain criteria have been met. The criteria are:

  • National digital radio coverage to match FM coverage
  • Local digital radio to reach 90% of the population
  • 50% of radio listening to be on digital radio platforms

Will BBC Radio 4 (and Radio 1, Radio 2 etc.) be switched off on FM at that time?

It is proposed that all national stations should move to broadcasting only on digital. This includes the BBC.

Will AM services also be switched off at switchover?

AM services will either move to FM or to digital only.

What if I can’t receive digital radio in my area?
As part of the criteria put in place before the switchover can take place, digital radio coverage must match FM coverage. Don’t worry if you can’t receive digital radio yet, it will be rolled out throughout the UK so you will soon be enjoying the extra features and content digital radio has to offer. In the meantime, you could buy one of our radios that receives both digital and FM, so that you can get a signal now but will also be ready for the digital future.

What can I do with my old FM radios? Adding them to landfill is bad for the environment
Car Audio Centre is a member of REPIC along with many other major electrical and electronic producers in the UK. REPIC’s role is to ensure that electrical appliances at end of life are reused or recycled and provides national WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) compliance solutions. It arranges for collection and reuse/recycling of old appliances such as FM radios from household waste recycling centres, manufacturers and retailers.

Haven’t broadcasters including the BBC dropped plans to expand on digital because of the cost?

Both the BBC and commercial broadcasters fully support the Digital Economy Act. Many digital-only stations have launched in the past year, including My Baby Radio, Premier Gospel and NME Radio. The BBC’s plans to axe BBC 6 Music and Asian Network have been cancelled, and Planet Rock, once threatened with closure, now enjoys a loyal fan base of almost 700,000 listeners.

Does this mean the end of my local radio station?
No! All radios sold by Car Audio Centre also have FM which will be used to transmit the local and community stations when the switchover takes place. You’ll still be able to listen to your favourite local station in the same way you do now, digital radio just opens up the options for further listening.

What will be done with the frequencies freed up by moving FM stations?

The FM frequencies will be used for local as well as other smaller broadcasters such as community, student and hospital stations.

Car Audio Centre are ready for the switchover but are you? We have a full range of units and adapters to suit all budgets. The easiest & cheapest way to get Digital Radio ( DAB ) in your car would be to use the In Phase Pro DAB+ adapter which we sell in store for £59.99. It plugs into your car’s cigar lighter & transmits DAB radio via a spare FM frequency.

It’s one of our best sellers here at the Northwood store & we highly recommend it.

pro dab+

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