Kiss FM appears on national Digital One
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Kiss FM appears on national Digital One

London-based Kiss FM UK has appeared on the national Digital One DAB multiplex, as Smooth Xmas ceased transmission for a second year.

Kiss, which is already available via a number of local digital multiplexes across the country in stereo, is transmitting in mono nationwide at 80 kbps.

Smooth Xmas, which was at the same quality, was only on-air for two months in the run-up to Christmas for the second time. Last year it morphed into Smooth 70s which is still transmitting.

Kiss FM UK is made up of Kiss 100 London, Kiss 101 in South Wales and the West, and Kiss 105-108 in the East of England. The same output is networked across all three (previously separate) FM stations after the Digital Economy Act allowed regional stations to combine if they provided a national version.

If the move is permanent, it means Kiss will appear twice on DAB sets in areas where the station is carried locally, including Birmingham, Exeter & Torbay, Cambridge, Manchester, South Yorkshire, Swindon, Tyne & Wear, Berkshire & North Hampshire, Coventry, Essex, Leeds, Peterborough, Stoke & Stafford, Cornwall, Humberside, Liverpool, Norwich, Teesside, West Yorkshire, Wolverhampton and London.

Digital One’s website says Kiss is testing at the moment, and an announcement is expected in the first quarter of 2013.

0 20 4609 27 December, 2012 Digital Radio News, Industry News Thursday, December 27th, 2012


  1. Michael Bolton

    This is not the quality promised consumers the industry is saddling people with worse than FM quality radio and yet heralding it as a move forward.

  2. Drew White

    Digital Radio – increasing the choice of stations by squeezing out the quality in order to fit them in! Kiss in mono makes about as much sense as promoting the future with a 70s cliche, but hey they’re doing that too.

    Take the D Love Christmas ad featuring a single speaker radio and only referring to the quality as “smooth sounds” – it almost manages to successfully avoid the issue, but wouldn’t a 70s ‘soul-brother’ be very into “stereophonic sounds”, baby?

    The radio ad which talks about the advantage of hearing D Love’s “dulcet tones” digitally and how analogue would leave you crying sounds like the opposite of what happens in an area without perfect DAB reception, leading to horribly garbled audio.

    If it is about the choice then it’s still a bit of a joke, since it still falls way behind RadioPlayer which confusingly is also being pushed as the radio platform to use. In the end wi-fi radios and phone apps probably stand a better chance as home broadband becomes near ubiquitous and mobile phones rapidly go ‘smart’.

    What of the people involved in D Love ad itself?

    “Vast” amounts of work needed – and people “laughing out loud”. Yep, that about sums it up.

  3. Matt

    Dab is supposed to be about choice, yet now I get 3 Kiss stations (one for Leicester, one for Nottingham, one on national DAB), yet there’s more choice on FM. If anything the Local Kisses should be replaced by a proper local station (not Capital or Heart) more along the lines Of Takeover which already broadcasts, or a return of Leicester Sound. Still there isn’t much choice in DAB, and FM seems more powerfull, with more bass.
    Look at all those Internet stations you can get on tune in radio App. I think some of these need to get on DAB as a National Multiplex (Digital 2).

    1. MB

      The local versions of Kiss will disappear in the New Year, the Digital 1 version is on test until then (whatever that means).

    2. Radio Geordie

      Remember about a month or so back when Global announced that they were pulling the regional MXR platforms?

      Its because of that. The local/regional services will need to switch to the local platforms (most of which are either owned by Now or Bauer). As many of the platforms have repetitive services anyway (Kiss, Kerrang, Heat, Choice, XFM and Gold), they need to be shifted off those platforms to make room for the local offerings.

      I agree that the National 2 licence should be put to use or that Ofcom re-advertise the licence especially now as it is most likely there would be a bigger demand for the licence this time around.

      Personally, I’ve never been a big fan of the gatekeeper system and when things like this are keep being allowed to happen, it only reinforces that view.

      1. MB

        At the Drive 2 Digital conference Ofcom’s Peter Davies confirmed that Digital 2 would be readvertised during 2013.

  4. bring back LOCAL radio

    Wow! It is 2012 and we are broadcasting in MONO, Brilliant! Even better, the Digital Radio Economy Act encourages abandoning local programming if you provide a national signal, in MONO!!!!!!! “Less local, More Mono.” Isn’t digital technology brilliant!

  5. Local is better

    Isn’t technology great! Mono radio! Brilliant! Even better, national (no local content) mono.

  6. harry worth

    dont blame global ofcom should have switched to dab+ years ago. then there would room for high quality stereo not am mono on dab

  7. James Vincent

    80kbps…. yet another joke. i can find it twice already running at at least 128kbps. which is still stupid. once again. u decision makers are just screw ups.. wonder if anyone pays attention to peoples comments???

  8. James Vincent

    i live in south east wales so now I have Kiss 3 times on my radio. from South West Mux, Bristol mux, D1 national. and the best quality output… from the Bristol multiplex!

  9. Lee

    80kb mono? is this permanent? Kiss Manchester has disappeared :-( that was 128kb stereo

  10. Lee Lewis

    Steve Parkinson, @ bauer media response to my email

    Hi Lee
    Thanks for your comments and yes Im aware a few
    people have noticed the change. For most people it doesn’t constitute
    a major difference but if you have good equipment it can affect
    satisfaction levels.

    Apologies for now but its going to save tens of
    thousands of pounds in capacity costs, but we will continue to review
    comments and capacity issues.

    Many thanks for your email

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