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Challenges for French DAB

New government may not preempt digital radio frequencies for Radio France

According to the daily newspaper Les Echos, the French government may decide not to preempt digital radio frequencies for Radio France.

In May, the Conseil supérieur de l’audiovisuel (CSA) received more than 178 applications for the cities of Paris, Marseille and Nice. It also announced plans to open a call for digital terrestrial licenses for France’s next 20 biggest cities.

It appears as if the public service broadcaster, which has first right of refusal on frequencies, may thus not go digital, in line with certain private groups including Lagardère, RTL, NRJ and NextradioTV.

Does this mean no more digital terrestrial radio for France? The government is expected officially to announce its decision in the coming days. However, if reports are true, observers say that they doubt the digital system will be able to move forward here in France.