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U.K. Listeners Still ‘Going Digital’

Digital radio reaches listening milestones says Digital Radio UK

Digital radio listening now represents 34.3% of radio listening hours, up 17% year on year, according to new RAJAR data. 26 million people now listen via a digital platform weekly, up 11% year on year. Weekly digital reach is now 50% of U.K. adults, or 55% of radio listeners.

The share of analog listening in the U.K. is currently at a historic low, at 60% of listening hours; in London, it is down to 54%.

DAB is the dominant platform, says Digital Radio UK, representing 22.5% of all radio listening hours, up from 19.1% in Q1 2012. DAB now reaches 16.8 million U.K. adults on a weekly basis, up 12% from 15 million year over year. DAB listening hours have reached 233 million, 66% of the total.

Approximately 23 million adults, 44.3% of the population, now have a DAB digital radio set, up from 42.6% in Q1 2012.

This data also shows 8.3% of in-car listening is now digital, in line with studies that show 35.4% of new cars now have digital radio as standard.

More hours of radio listening now occur online or through apps than DTV for the first time: 52 million hours versus 51 million. Online and app radio listening grew by 24%, year on year, to 5% of listening hours, due to audiences listening to Radioplayer, BBC Radio iPlayer and station apps. Share of DTV listening is up 9%, year on year.

Digital-only stations now represent 25% of digital listening hours. Absolute Radio 80s and Smooth UK both recorded over 1 million listeners. BBC Radio 1 Xtra’s DAB listening hours increased from 902,000 to 1.86 million, and Absolute Radio 80s whose DAB hours are up from 2.37 million to 3.95 million, the release says.

Digital audiences continue to grow to all stations on digital. Capital’s digital audience is up 15.8% year on year, Classic FM is up 16%, Radio 2 is up 15.1% and Radio 4 up 14.1% year on year. Radio 3 showed a 33.5% increase in its digital audience.