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DAB+ Pilot Project Announced for Senegal

Move described as a commitment to audiovisual innovation

ARTP Director-General Abdou Karim Sall (center) addresses the workshop. TDS-SA Director-General Dr. Nafissatou Diouf is at right, and Ousseynou Dieng, director of communications for the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, is at left. (Photo courtesy TDS-SA via Facebook.)

Senegal is moving to be the first, Sub-Saharan francophone nation in Africa to launch DAB+ digital radio. On May 8, 2024, telecom regulator Autorité de Régulation des Télécoms et Postes (ARTP) hosted a workshop detailing the planned pilot project. In Senegal, the technology is being marketing as “Radio Numérique Terrestre” or RNT.

Speaking at the workshop, Dr. Nafissatou Diouf, director-general of Société de Télédiffusion du Sénégal (TDS-SA), said: “Today marks a milestone in the evolution of technology in Senegal, because it is the beginning of our commitment to a perspective of innovation and continuous improvement of the audiovisual services provided to our fellow citizens.”

The pilot program is being led by ARTP in collaboration with TDS-SA. TDS-SA has been engaged since 2014 in the roll out of DVB-T2 digital television across Senegal.

ARTP Director-General Abdou Karim Sall, said “I think this project had to be done here. Senegal needed it” due to shortages of FM frequencies in parts of the country. He noted that the ability of DAB+ to carry 16 stations on a single frequency would mean more free-to-air services for listeners.

As part of the pilot project, according to a report by the Grand Panel newspaper, TDS SA will operate two multiplexes.

Dakar-based Urban Media Group announced soon after the workshop that its youth-oriented station Urban African Radio would participate in the DAB+ pilot project.

“Urban Africa Radio is convinced that RNT is the future of broadcasting and is committed to playing a major role in its development in Senegal,” according to the announcement.

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