The Norwegian government, national TV broadcaster and national-private radio channels agreed to move all radio signals over to the new digital DAB+ standard in 2017. There have been many protests against it, but the DAB revolution just started in January. Today the next municipality in Norway got its FM Radio band signals removed for the NRK national radio channels. By December this year, everyone coming to Norway or living in Norway will need a DAB+ capable radio to be able to listen to Norwegian radio. Read on…

First country to abandon FM totally in the World is Norway
Norway as the very first country in the world, is now turning of FM radio signals totally in 2017 for national and private radio channels. First out was Nordlands municipality on 11th of January and next was Trøndelag today for the national NRK radio channels (alike BBC in UK etc), which was shut down at exactly 11.11. The private radio channels P4 and Radio Norway can still be heard on FM until 21 April though.

Here is the official list

  • Nordland: 11th of January 2017
  • Trøndelag og Møre og Romsdal: 8th of Februar 2017
  • Sogn og Fjordane, Hordaland, Rogaland og Agder-fylkene: 21st of June 2017
  • Østfold, Vestfold, Oslo og Akershus: 20th of September 2017
  • Troms og Finnmark: 13th of December 2017

(Source: NRK)

Last municipality to shut down FM will be Troms and Finnmark
The major radio stations and local stations in the Norwegian towns, will be disappearing from the FM radio band region for region. First the shut down started in Nordland, which will lost the FM channels on 11th of January 2017. Last municipality out is Troms and Finnmark, where the transition will take place on December 13th this year. The table below shows how the extinction of FM transmitters is planned:

Dato Region Info
11.01.2017 Nordland All
08.02.2017 Trøndelag, Møre og Romsdal NRK radio channels
21.04.2017 Trøndelag, Møre og Romsdal P4, Radio Norge , local radio
26.04.2017 Telemark, Buskerud, Hedmark og Oppland NRK radio channels
16.06.2017 Telemark, Buskerud, Hedmark og Oppland P4, Radio Norge , local radio
21.06.2017 Sogn og Fjordane, Hordaland, Rogaland, Agder NRK radio channels
15.09.2017 Sogn og Fjordane, Hordaland, Rogaland, Agder P4, Radio Norge , local radio
20.09.2017 Østfold, Vestfold, Oslo, Akershus NRK radio channels
08.12.2017 Østfold, Vestfold, Oslo, Akershus P4, Radio Norge , local radio
13.12.2017 Troms, Finnmark All
(Source: NRK)

Risky shut down for a Hilly country
The FM shutdown in Norway is very questionable. Almost every car got a FM radio. Only newer models got a DAB+ radio. If you dont have a DAB+ radio and antenna, the process to get it is pretty crazy. FM also got quite good sound quality, while DAB+ just outputs static sound quality. It will be really interesting to see if this shut down will go as planned. We will know in December, or maybe earlier? Can the private channels handle the change? Will they loose listeners or not?