The WDR is expanding its range in DAB Plus and, starting Monday, will also offer every “WDR 2 local time” from eight regions in North Rhine-Westphalia on digital radio. So far, there was only the expenditure from Rhein-Ruhr, the Rhineland and Dortmund. From July 6, the “local time” from Aachen, South Westphalia, Bergisches Land, Münsterland and East Westphalia-Lippe will be added to the pilot operation.
According to WDR, many DAB + radios carry out a search regularly, so that every “WDR 2 local time” should automatically appear in the station list. Alternatively, the search can also be initiated manually. In contrast to FM, the respective local time is spread nationwide. DAB + offers the possibility that you can hear your “local time” all over NRW – and not just in your own region.
In order to be able to broadcast every “local time” via DAB +, the DAB Plus channel (11 D) will be re-sorted: In future, the VERA traffic channel will only be available on the Internet and via WDR apps. The data rates of the WDR programs will be reduced somewhat, so that in future all programs including the regionalization of WDR 2 will have space on one channel. According to the press release of the WDR on Sunday (July 5), care is taken to ensure that WDR 3 with its program of classical music continues to be at the level of the classical programs of other ARD state broadcasters. The somewhat lower data rates in pilot operation are said to be temporary. WDR is in the process of developing solutions to create additional capacities for even more audio quality.
In the meantime, more than half of the new cars are equipped with a DAB Plus radio. By the end of the year, it is already mandatory that radios in new cars must also have DAB Plus. The second private national multiplex is scheduled to start in October 2020.