A Swiss company that specializes in small-scale DAB has created a U.K. business to apply for multiplex licenses there.
Digris Switzerland said it incorporated digris Limited in partnership with Rash Mustapha, a former senior technologist at British communications regulator Ofcom. It says Mustapha is credited with developing small-scale DAB in the U.K.
In addition to applying for licenses, the new entity will offer managed services for radio stations and other network operators.
“Digris Switzerland is also not altogether unknown, being developers of the software-based distribution platform of Opendigitalradio, which enables smaller radio stations to broadcast digitally,” Digris stated in an email.
“This distribution concept, known as small-scale DAB, has now established itself throughout Europe. The company’s cost-oriented approach is favorable to media diversity and an open information society. Digris is also a network operator and operates small-scale DAB+ networks as both single-frequency and multifrequency networks in Switzerland and France since 2014.”
Mustapha was named chief technology officer and will lead digris Limited in the UK.
He was quoted in the announcement: “The opportunity now being presented is a step-change from what has been tested in the trials. We’re expecting to see lots of single-frequency networks and there simply isn’t enough experienced technical resource out there to build so many, and then support them adequately at scale. I’m obviously very keen for small-scale DAB to be a success and I know, with digris, it can be.”
Digris says it broadcasts 60% of the DAB+ radio services in Switzerland and France.
Small-scale DAB is described as a low-cost route for local commercial, community and specialist music services to broadcast on terrestrial digital radio to a relatively small area. According to Ofcom, a number of small-scale DAB multiplexes have been running on a trial basis over the past five years, but the regulator is now advertising non-trial small-scale radio multiplex licenses.