I am looking for data that compares the number of transmissions per month or year among the various digital modes such as DMR, D-star and Fusion.

I want to see how popular these technologies have been over time.

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    you might want to restrict the bands you're concerned about. And the kind of digital mode communication: human voice interaction? APRS reports? If something with voice: number of one-way messages, or total on-air time? – Marcus Müller Dec 5 at 15:02
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    Generally, maybe tell us why you care about that popularity; maybe there's already a derivative statistic out there that helps you answer the question that you have, which leads you to ask about popularity. – Marcus Müller Dec 5 at 15:03
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    I can't imagine who or what counts digital VHF/UHF transmissions worldwide. I'd think you'd have to settle for other statistics, like numbers of radios sold or numbers of operational repeaters, but even those statistics could be difficult to collect. – rclocher3 Dec 5 at 18:39
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    that's why I asked for restrictions to specific bands; for example, there's statistics for HF FT-8, but that's "easier" because you need relatively few observing stations to get reasonable good overall estimates. The smaller the individual reach is, the more observing stations you'd need to get a reasonable estimate. Chiliyago,please try to explain what you need more practically;the two of us don't believe your numbers exist,but maybe we can give you something else that is just as good. Why/for what purpose do you want to know? Writing a report? Considering buying something? Debugging? – Marcus Müller Dec 5 at 18:58
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    also, please explain what you mean with "digital technology". Is APRS covered by that? What about WSPR, FT-8? What about Hamnet? What's a transmission? Is every Wifi packet a transmission? – Marcus Müller Dec 5 at 19:02

I think this is an interesting question, but seems hard to answer. In the USA, perhaps you could FOIA the FCC to see what their monitoring stations cover and/or if they collect any data on this.

Otherwise, the digital modes you are asking about (DMR, D-star and Fusion) are typically used on the VHF/UHF bands. These transmissions do not propagate far, and so are by nature a "local" thing. Just sampling one local area would not necessarily be representative, either. I'm sure it varies between one group of users on one repeater vs. another repeater, and some wider regions will tend to different modes than others, and it likely varies significantly between, say, Europe vs. USA vs. South America vs. Asia…

Depending on the motive for your question, maybe a better approach or new followup question would be to see if radio sales numbers are available? Not that everyone uses the digital features, but it at least would reveal potential.

Another alternate approach might be to look in the repeater databases (or general radio system listings) and see which protocols are represented most.

Finally, if you primarily want to get a radio compatible with nearby contacts, see if there's an in-person general ham or repeater club or a social media group of hams in your city/district. If asked, I'm sure they'd be happy to offer some opinions of the best type to get based on what's popular locally.

  • DMR, D-star, and Fusion repeaters are almost all interlinked on the internet. So global monitoring maybe isn't so difficult, if you're willing to accept some sampling bias. – Phil Frost - W8II Dec 6 at 20:55

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