Drivers prefer digital to FM radio

Research revealed at the WorldDAB Automotive Event, has explored the in-car user experience of digital radio. Carried out in, Germany, UK, The Netherlands and Belgium, the research asked 40 consumers about their experience of in-car digital radio.

Key findings include:

  • Drivers love digital radio and prefer the experience to FM radio
  • Drivers expect a great user interface which is easy to use
  • To search for stations, an A-Z station list offers the best user experience
  • Some digital radio terms are confusing for drivers
  • Having a ‘RADIO’ button is the best way to access DAB/DAB+

This is the first research of its kind on the user experience of digital radio in the car. The automotive industry has been supporting this work through the WorldDAB UX Group and initial reaction to the research has been positive.

The majority of people found an A-Z station list the easiest way of navigating between stations, with over 50 per cent saying it was easy using an A-Z list, compared with browsing stations listed by multiplex. Respondents value the information digital radio is able to provide, with nearly all appreciating a station name and ‘now playing’ information on the dashboard.

Ronald Heuthe, Hardware Architect, Daimler said: “We always welcome any insight into how we can deliver the best possible experience for drivers. As a member of the WorldDAB User Experience Group, we will be working closely with the broadcast industry on how the results of this research can be applied in the future.”

Laurence Harrison, Chairman of the WorldDAB User Experience Group and Market Development Director at Digital Radio UK, said: “People love digital radio in the car and there has been a significant growth in the number of cars sold with DAB as standard, up to 86 per cent in the UK and 98 per cent in Norway. This research will help the automotive and broadcast industries continue to create the best possible experience for drivers. The next step will be using this research to inform a set of guidelines and anyone who wants to get involved or find out more should contact WorldDAB.”

Also at the event it was announced that over 4.6 million new cars with DAB sold in 2016 across eight key European markets and Australia.

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