Mandurah will be the ninth city in Australia and the first non-capital to have DAB+ digital radio, when the free to air broadcast technology is rolled out to Western Australia’s second largest city on Monday, December 23.
“We’re pleased to work with West Coast Radio to launch free to air DAB+ radio services in Mandurah in time for Christmas,” said Joan Warner, chief executive officer of industry body Commercial Radio Australia.
“DAB+ is the biggest upgrade for broadcast radio since FM was launched in the 1980s. It’s a superior and highly efficient technology and will allow broadcasters to offer better and richer radio services and new stations.
“For instance, broadcasters will be able to offer new formats and pop-up stations to celebrate a festival, tour or sports event.”
West Coast Radio content director John De Bellis said: “We’re excited to officially launch DAB+ with our popular FM stations 97.3 Coast FM and 91.7 The Wave both broadcasting in digital from December 23. Listeners can look forward to new stations rolling out in the coming months, offering more exciting choices of music and entertainment.”
Mandurah is the ninth city in Australia to have DAB+, following launches in Canberra, Darwin and Hobart earlier this year. DAB+ has been available in Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Brisbane and Perth since 2009, with new stations offering country music, rock, chill out and more.
Consumers will need a DAB+ radio to tune in. DAB+ radios come in a wide range of models, including portable and bedside clock radios. DAB+ has also been integrated into some sound systems and Bluetooth speakers.
DAB+ radios feature screens with a text display and some can also display images. Other benefits include automatic tuning, so users can easily select stations by name from a station list, with no need to find AM and FM frequencies.
Consumers who have purchased a new car recently may already have a DAB+ radio as 70% of all new cars sold in Australia are now factory fitted with DAB+. Consumers can simply select the DAB+ stations from the station list.