Ofcom has awarded 10 trial licenses for radio multiplexes to areas throughout the United Kingdom. This means 60 new digital stations will broadcast digitally for the first time using small scale DAB. Ofcom explains that the trials are designed to test how the small scale DAB broadcasts work and how smaller radio stations could work together.
According to the regulator, the licenses cover radio multiplexes, which are “discrete chunks of airwaves used to broadcast several radio services.” This will enable groups of community, online and local commercial radio stations to work together and bring new stations to local areas for a smaller cost than traditional DAB, it states.
The stations are expected to begin broadcasting this summer for a period of nine months. Each licensee will have 12 weeks to launch its multiplex. Ofcom says it will then work with the Government on the next steps.
The trial licenses were awarded to Angel Radio, BFBS Aldershot, Brighton & Hove Radio, Celador Radio, Future Digital Norfolk, Niocast Digital, Switch Radio, Scrimshaws Information Directories, U.DAB and UKRD.