Monday, July 21, 2008

iPhones to Revolutionize Radio?

Last week Larry Magid wrote a piece called "Can the New iPhone Revolutionize Radio?," which points out some intriguing possibilities and new audiences for terrestrial radio with iPhone applications like AOL Radio, Pandora and Tuner. He writes:

"...the iPhone may fundamentally change the way people listen to the radio when they're in their cars or otherwise on the go.

Two free applications for the iPhone and iPod Touch, and another program that costs only $4.99, make it possible to listen to live radio on the iPhone from anywhere, including a moving car.

Unlike those pre-TV days when families sat around a big radio console in the living room, a lot of people now listen to radio mainly when they're on the move. Internet radio has been around for more than a decade, car radios were introduced in the 1930's and portable transistor radios became available in the 1950s.

Until now, live radio pretty much meant listening to a broadcast station with transmitters relatively nearby. But with the iPhone you can listen to stations from around the world, including some that broadcast only on the Internet and don't even have transmitters.

Over time, this could be as disruptive to the radio broadcast industry as the Web has been to print."

Have any of you tried listening to radio on an iPhone? Do you think this will mean more listeners for college and indie radio stations? Pretty cool if it does, but pretty sad if people just retreat further into their own individual playlists.

P.S. Here's another piece about the indie radio possibilities of the iPhone, along with praise for "cutting edge college radio stations" from The Daily Press.

P.P.S. An article last week in the San Francisco Chronicle pointed out that "More than 200,000 Pandora stations have been created on the iPhone, with the highest number of listeners the company has ever had..."

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