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AT&T To Activate FM Chip/NextRadio App

AT&T NextRadio FM Chip Emmis Jeff SmulyanAT&T has agreed to join Sprint in activating the FM receiver chip in all Android phones.

The #2 mobile provider in the United States will make FM chip activation part of their device specifications for 2016. Devices with the FM Chip and the NextRadio App active should begin to reach stores by the end of this year.

This announcement is only for phones running on the Android platform, as Apple controls the specifications for the iPhone regardless of carrier.

The NAB released the following statement in regards to the announcement:

In response to the announcement that AT&T will include FM Chip activation in their 2016 device specifications for Android smartphones, the following statement can be attributed to NAB President and CEO Gordon Smith:

“Today marks a new beginning in mobile technology with the agreement by a global iconic brand, AT&T, to light up the FM receiver chips in all of its future Android smartphones. With this decision, AT&T’s customers become the biggest beneficiaries, giving them access to local radio news, entertainment, weather, and failsafe emergency alert connectivity. With access to apps like NextRadio, AT&T’s listeners will also enjoy song tagging and interactivity features that have become increasingly popular with younger listeners.

“America’s broadcasters salute AT&T’s decision to serve its customers through collaboration with America’s local radio stations. Bravo!”

AT&T’s announcement today follows a 2013 announcement from Sprint to activate FM chips on select Android and Windows smartphones.

Profile photo of Lance Venta
Lance Venta is the Owner and Publisher of RadioInsight.com and a consultant for RadioBB Networks specializing in integration of radio and the internet. Lance has two decades of experience tracking the audio industry and its use of digital platforms.

6 Comments

  1. Profile photo of johndavis


    Well, NextRadio has a better chance of getting in a consumer’s hand with ATT than it ever has with Sprint.

    Consumers, in my eyes, don’t pick what they want to listen to based on the technology. They just want the content. To them this is just another station aggregator. Broadcasters still have to give them something people want to listen to. If the NAB thinks younger listeners care about tagging, they’re high. Picking the right songs and finding the right commercial load is more important in the long run. But the app does put stations where the audience is looking for entertainment and you have to be where the people are.

  2. Profile photo of Jeff Lehmann


    Now if only they would enable it on the iPhone…

  3. Profile photo of Destructor


    Another iPhone user here. This totally rocks.. Not. LOL
    It’s not like any of the local stations have good music, though.

  4. Profile photo of only1moore


    Apple might want to take advantage of the opportunity while its there. Android and Windows users are going to celebrate the announcement while iPhone users are going to cry foul over being excluded from this latest advancement in technology.

  5. Profile photo of Caleb Correll


    iPhone user here via Sprint. I feel a bit left out.

  6. Profile photo of Eva


    So much for the iphone being advanced. It’s been available on my hubby’s HTC phone for ages and he’s never used the feature. No loss.

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