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Tuesday, 9th April 2013 [updated 29th April 2013]
Digital One to extend stations into Northern Ireland within 6 months

Ofcom has given approval for a new bundle of radio stations to include Jazz FM, Absolute 80s, Absolute Radio 90s, BFBS, Planet Rock and Smooth Radio to be broadcast across Northern Ireland on DAB digital radio.

The new bundle of stations will be carried on six new transmitters at Divis, Carnmoney Hill, Londonderry, Brougher Mountain, Strabane and Limavady to provide coverage [update] to 74 percent of the population. The multiplex, operated by Digital One, will be transmitted on channel 11D - the same channel used in England and Wales to broadcast national commercial stations. [update] Digital One plan to launch the network of transmitters in "late summer" 2013.

The current line-up of stations can be seen on our station pages and is subject to alteration before the multiplex is launched. The new multiplex is the third to cover Northern Ireland, with the BBC's national stations and a selection of national commercial stations including talkSPORT, Kiss and Classic FM already broadcasting on a second multiplex for the nation.

Ofcom received eighteen responses to the consultation, all of which were supportive of Digital One's request, apart from one. The primary reason given by respondents for their support was that allowing Digital One to extend coverage of its national radio multiplex service to include Northern Ireland would give listeners there access to the same variety of national DAB radio services already available in the other parts of the United Kingdom. The one respondent who was opposed to the proposal expressed concern that Digital One's proposed coverage in certain parts of Northern Ireland outside of the Belfast area would not be as extensive as that in Belfast itself.

You may need to fully retune your DAB radio in order to get the new stations on block 11D, when the multiplex launches in "late summer" 2013.

To receive DAB digital radio services, you need a type of radio designed to pick up digital broadcasts over the airwaves through its built-in aerial. We've links to good models on our pages, or scroll down the page for some quick links to both DAB and wi-fi sets.

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Related links:
Northern Ireland services, on this website.
NI, England, Scotland & Wales national services, on this website.

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