Information about local television channels 1980-2007 is provided by the Norwegian Media Authority, which is responsible for the administration of licenses to local broadcasting. From 2008 onwards the data are based on information compiled by medianorway, and include local TV channels in operation at year end with transmission in the terrestrial TV network.
Other local channels consists of local TV channels with cable or online distribution only. When licensing to transmit in local cable networks was abolished i 2004, less information became available. 2007 onwards no information about local channels without transmission in the terrestrial network is available.
Number of Norwegian nationwide, regional and local TV channels 1980 - 2021
|Local generalist channels||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||36||61|
|Other local channels||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||42|
|Local generalist channels||70||84||62||65||64||65||30||30||29||28|
|Other local channels||36||37||39||36||37||38||22||23||27||29|
|Local generalist channels||26||27||26||23||23||23||24||25||22||14|
|Other local channels||33||33||30||30||14||14||11||-||-||-|
|Local generalist channels||12||12||13||14||15||7||6||6||7||8|
|Local generalist channels||8||8|
A nationwide channel is a channel that is available in the Norwegian language throughout major parts of the country. Channels targeting a Nordic audience are not included.
Regional channels consist of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation's regional broadcasts.
The number of local generalist channels includes all such channels that are transmitted in the terrestrial network. The regulation scheme for local television was changed with the digitalisation of the terrestrial television network in 2009. Until 2009 companies with a license to transmit in the terrestrial network were guaranteed a transmission frequence. 2009 onwards the channels need both a license from the Media Authority and a contract with the commercial distribution company RiksTV.
The decrease in the number of 'Other local' TV channels in 2004 is a result of changes in regulation, as transmissions in local cable networks no longer require a licence. From 2004 onwards the category 'Other local' consists of licences to local transmissions in available capacity in NRK2's analogue terrestrial network only. With the digitalisation of the terrestrial network this arrangement was terminated.
There are no categorisation of local channels in 1988. In 1996, new and fewer regions for generalist local television were established, with only one licence in each region. In the same year, licences for transmissions in NRK2's distribution network were made available for NGOs and religious organisations. Together with licences for transmissions in local cable networks, these constitute the category 'Other local channels' in the result table.