RAJAR: More UK listeners tuning into radio on digital platforms

Esequiel Farfan
May 17, 2018

Grimshaw pulled in 5.1 million listeners a week in the first three months of the year, compared with 5.7 million a week in the last quarter of 2017, according to the latest figures from audience research body Rajar. After scrapping plans to shut down analogue radio in 2015, it announced it would only consider a full switchover when 50 per cent of people consumed radio digitally and 90 per cent of the population was covered. [See Notes to Editors].

The popularity of Amazon's Echo smart speakers has helped push the audience for digital radio past that of FM and AM in the United Kingdom for the first time.

The statistics come just days after BBC director of radio and music Bob Shennan said music streaming services could kill off radio.

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Listening online and via apps proved to be by far the fastest-growing segment of digital consumption, with hours of listening in the first quarter surging by 14m (17%) year on year to 95m hours.

"This is a landmark moment for for the radio industry and for listeners alike", said Ford Ennals, the chief executive of Digital Radio UK. "We look forward to continuing to work with broadcasters, the supply chain and Government on delivering radio's digital future and the upcoming digital radio review". "The digital transition is good news for radio and is helping our industry compete more effectively in the digital age".

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