Questions and answers
When are you going to launch [location] multiplex?
The local multiplex for Northants is due to launch in Spring 2013. Derbyshire will be launched in 2013, but at the moment we can’t give a more precise date.
Why isn’t [certain station] available on this multiplex?
NOW Digital operates like a landlord owning a house and renting out the rooms to other people. The ‘tenants’ – the service providers, or radio stations, pay the landlord, the multiplex operator (us), to broadcast their services.
NOW Digital tries to offer a range of services to that provide listeners significant choice, and cater for different tastes and interests. We also try to ‘simulcast’ existing FM and AM stations that broadcast in local areas. NOW Digital, cannot however force stations to join the multiplexes, it is up to them whether they decide to broadcast on DAB.
If there is a station that you would like to hear on a local multiplex, we suggest contacting that station directly and asking why they are not broadcasting to this area on DAB Digital Radio. If they see that there is a demand for their service it may encourage them to join the local multiplex.
Can I receive your multiplex, my postcode is [x]?
The coverage maps on this website will enable you to see if you are within our predicted coverage area. The best way to check what you can receive is to use the postcode checker at www.getdigitalradio.com.
NOW Digital cannot guarantee coverage, and local geography can make a difference. Try moving your radio around your house and ensure your aerial is configured in the correct manner. If you are on the edges of the coverage area, a fixed external aerial may help your reception.
Why are some stations at different bitrates to others?
It is the decision of the radio station how much capacity they wish to purchase from NOW Digital, subject to there being enough capacity.
I have a radio station/internet radio station/RSL/broadcast project - how do I get on the multiplex?
Please see the Potential clients page of this site for more information.
How much does it cost to buy capacity?
It depends on the coverage and the area. We sell capacity on a ratecard system so a stereo service will be double the price of a mono service, as the stereo service will use double the amount of capacity. We do not normally disclose our ratecard without first having seen a completed Service Provider Application form. Please see the Potential clients page of this site for more information.
What is Pop Up Radio?
Pop Up Radio is a special service operated by NOW Digital that is available in selected locations. Programming featured on Pop Up Radio is usually related to
a particular event, because of this there are sometimes periods when the service does not operate.
Some multiplexes don't have very many (new) services - when will there be more choice?
We would much prefer to operate full multiplexes with loads of new services - sometimes this is what happens. The reality is that sometimes we launch with a small line-up and other services join over time. Radio companies often need time to consider the investment of launching in a new area.
As we have said before, we can't force people to join the multiplexes - we are always happy to talk to potential service providers. If there are any services you would like to hear in a given area, we suggest you contact them directly. If they see there is a demand for their service it may encourage them to join up.
When are you adding the new transmitter in [x] area?
In our licence applications we lay out our transmitter plans for each area, and where we have made commitments to add transmitters, Ofcom will hold us to deliver.
Often plans do change: In several cases we have not actually launched with the original planned transmitters, due to planning issues or other obstacles and this can affect what our future plans are.
In every instance we are in constant contact with Ofcom and have to gain their agreement before making any changes.
Why can't I get Radio 1/Planet Rock/Classic FM/ANother
We only operate the local digital multiplexes in the areas listed on the navigation - if you have queries about national services you'll need to get in touch with either Digital One for national commercial stations and the BBC for national BBC Channels.
Why do you operate under so many different companies?
There are six companies that NOW Digital represents, these are; NOW Digital Ltd, NOW Digital (Southern) Ltd, NOW Digital (East Midlands) Ltd,
South West Digital Radio Ltd, Arqiva Ltd and NOW Digital (Oxford) Ltd. NOW Digital Ltd own the bulk of multiplexes, this is 100% owned by Arqiva and was the local DAB arm of the former
GWR Group. NOW Digital (Southern) Ltd own the former Capital Radio local DAB multiplexes, and is 100% owned by Arqiva. NOW Digital (East Midlands) Ltd was established as a joint venture
between NOW Digital, Global Radio and Sabras Radio. South West Digital Radio Ltd is a joint venture between NOW Digital and UKRD Group. NOW Digital (Oxford) Ltd is a joint venture between
NOW Digital and Passion Radio Oxford. Finally, Arqiva Ltd operate the Ayr multiple. The Ayr multiplex was formerly owned by Score Digital, the local DAB arm of Scottish Radio Holdings.