World

Norway to be the first to shut down FM radio

OSLO: Norway will become the first country in the world today to start shutting down its FM radio network in favour of digital radio, a bold move watched closely by other countries around Europe.

Supporters of Digital Audio Broadcasting say DAB offers better sound quality and more channels at an eighth of the cost of FM (frequency modulation) transmission, which was first launched in the US in 1945.

The authorities also say DAB offers better coverage, allows listeners to catch up on programmes they have missed and makes it easier to broadcast emergency messages in times of crisis.

But many think the shift is premature.

A poll in Dagbladet newspaper last month found 66 per cent of Norwegians are against shutting down FM, with only 17 per cent in favour. - AFP

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