FM Radio has fallen off the radar ever since the rise of smartphones and cheaper data. While FM still is a viable and sometimes the only option to receive broadcasted music and news, smartphones and their owners now prefer higher quality services which rely on data for streaming. In a surprising move off the beaten path, LG has announced an agreement with TagStation LLC, owner of the NextRadio app, to enable the FM chips existing inside LG smartphones.
LG will enable the FM chip in its smartphones “going forward“, which will provide millions of people in the US, Canada and Latin America; and more countries will follow in the future. LG will also look into preloading the NextRadio app on a few smartphone models, but this is subject to agreements with wireless carriers.
Most of our current smartphones do come with FM tuner, but OEMs end up disabling the same on many models mostly under pressure from carriers. Alternatives to radio rely on data, which gives carriers a vested interest in creating an artificial handicap to this practically free solution for music and news. FM Tuner capability is built into Qualcomm’s LTE modem, so one does wonder why such a crucial piece of technology is left deactivated in the developing world. Its usage in emergency situations should have been enough of a reason to make such a feature a vital part of our current smartphone lives. But thanks to carriers and other stakeholders like Apple (with its music business) not showing any interest in this tech, consumer interest has waned enough to push this feature into neglect and apathy.
Hopefully, with LG pushing forth, other OEMs will hopefully follow along.
What are your thoughts on LG’s collaboration with TagStation over NextRadio? Do you miss FM functionality on your phone? Let us know in the comments below!
from xda-developers http://ift.tt/2wQbw66