Get the Latest Info on Digital Radio

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Digital radio sits alongside AM and FM (analogue) as an alternative radio transmission platform. Like analogue radio, it is broadcast on a free-to-air basis over the airwaves. Digital radio does this via DAB+ technology. Digital radio is future facing and is a vital element in Australia's multi-platform media environment. Community digital radio services augment community analogue radio services and online streaming. 

Digital radio was launched in Australia in 2009. Currently, there are 53 community radio licensees operating 60+ digital services across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, Darwin, Hobart, and the Gold Coast. There are also additional temporary DAB+ services broadcast by several licensees nationally. This is in line with the Government’s plans to have a staged rollout of digital radio services. 

A recent McNairs Yellowsquares survey suggests over 30% of community radio listening is by way of DAB+ digital radio, with 70% of the population with listening access to digital radio nationally. Listening in car is key, 82% of new vehicles sold in Australia are DAB+ radio fitted.  

The inclusion of community radio services on the digital spectrum reflects the Federal Government’s commitment to community broadcasting, to the production of local content and to media diversity.

Community digital radio is facilitated by the CBAA via the Digital Radio Project. The CBAA is committed to the advancement and development of community digital radio services on a free-to-air basis.

Find out more about digital radio funding and other frequently asked questions here.

Digital Community Radio Station's Programming & Content

Some community digital radio licensees use the opportunity of a digital radio service to broadcast additional content for their communities of interest that can’t be heard elsewhere. Some stations have introduced all-new digital radio services, some simulcast their analogue service on their digital service while others produce a hybrid  – broadcasting programs from their analogue service along with new programs which are exclusive to their digital service.

In addition to day-to-day radio services, digital stations also produce ‘pop-up’ and special event services. These are usually a collaborative effort by a national network of community stations, examples include:

7EDG digital radio

Helen Henry, 1st April 2019

Community radio services in Hobart are now a step closer to being available on DAB+ Digital Radio.

Jon Bisset

jbisset, 31st October 2018

First and foremost, it is an exciting time to be in community radio, not least due to record breaking national listening audience of 5.7 million listeners per week.

2016 CBAA Conference

Helen Henry, 28th July 2017

Digital transformation and documentary-making added to this year's program.

Keep Community Radio

hfriedlander, 4th May 2017

The community broadcasting sector today welcomes the Federal Government’s decision to increase sector funding by $6.1m over two years. 

Helen Henry, 21st December 2016

Following the announcement of digital radio extension beyond the five capital cities, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has outlined the general approach and planning principles for regional Australia.