NCA to commence Digital Audio Broadcasting trial this August 2023

The National Communications Authority (NCA) has announced that starting August 2023, it will initiate a Digital Audio Broadcasting (DAB) trial in Ghana. This trial will enable selected FM stations to be broadcast simultaneously in both Accra and Kumasi. This breakthrough means that radio stations located in Accra can now be heard directly in Kumasi, without the need for their signals to pass through a Kumasi-based station. Similarly, stations located in Kumasi can also be heard in Accra without their signals having to go through other stations in the capital city. This move positions Ghana as the first country in West Africa and the fourth in Africa to adopt DAB technology.

NCA

With the implementation of DAB, a new era of radio broadcasting is expected to unfold. Digital signals will be harnessed to deliver an array of benefits, including enhanced sound quality, expanded station choices, and interactive features. Overcoming the limitations of traditional analog FM radio, DAB promises to provide a transformative and engaging listening experience. One key advantage of DAB is its ability to overcome the frequency constraints faced by FM radio in major Ghanaian cities. With limited FM frequencies available, DAB offers a solution to expand coverage, catering to the growing demand for sound broadcasting services. DAB utilizes digital signals, resulting in improved reception quality by mitigating interference and delivering superior audio quality compared to traditional analog FM radio.

Efficient spectrum usage is another significant benefit of DAB. By allowing more stations to share the same frequency channel and transmitter, DAB enhances energy and frequency efficiency. In the upcoming trial, 18 existing FM stations in Accra and Kumasi will share the same frequency channel to deliver DAB services, maximizing the utilization of limited resources. Furthermore, DAB enables the transmission of metadata, such as text and images, providing enhanced interactive services. This includes the dissemination of service and program information, emergency warnings, news updates, and weather and traffic information.

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DAB also simplifies the process of selecting stations. Listeners are able to search for station names instead of having to memorize frequencies, making it more user-friendly and convenient for consumers. The NCA’s upcoming DAB trial marks a significant milestone in Ghana’s radio broadcasting landscape. By embracing this digital technology, the country aims to address the frequency constraints of FM radio, improve reception quality, optimize spectrum usage, and provide an enhanced interactive experience for listeners. DAB showcases its commitment to innovation and positions it as a pioneer in digital broadcasting in West Africa.

Mark
Gurleen Kaur

I'm a science graduate from the Ahmadu Bello University, Nigeria. My passion for writing has brought me to into the field of content.