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Posted on: 04/02/2008

STUDY INDICATESCONVENIENCEHAS BECOME RADIO’S TOP BENEFIT Convenience trumps content for AM/FM listeners, according to a new study that will be released at the RAIN Las Vegas Summit on Monday April 14th. According to the RadioNext online survey of nearly 2,400 18+ North Americans, half say radio is either “totally indispensible” or an “important part of my life.” The study brings up an important point: if AM/FM’s chief advantage over other forms of audio entertainment (such as Internet streaming) is its distribution, what happens when that advantage vanishes with the advent of widespread wireless, in-car, and mobile Net access? Only 30% of respondents mentioned broadcast radio’s “exclusive content” as an important benefit. The study was co-sponsored by Ando Media, RAIN, and Solutions Research Group.

SIGNED UP FOR THE RAIN SUMMIT YET? And speaking of the RAIN Las Vegas Summit, there’s a handful of complimentary registrations remaining, compliments of sponsor Ando Media! See Kurt’s blog (on the right) to claim one!

RADIOTIME ADDS COX, CBS AND CC TO ONLINE GUIDE Major broadcasters will have their online stations listed in RadioTime’s online RadioGuide, according to RadioTime CEO Bill Moore. The front page of the website today features a number of FM stations from major markets and shows that enjoy national distribution like the Steve Harvey Morning Show. Stations owned by Cox, CBS and Clear Channel will be listed among the guides’ 50,000 stations. Moore’s quote for coverage in Inside Radio sheds some light on the value the company’s chief believes FM broadcasters will receive from the listings, saying that “We’re trying to take traditional radio and make sure it’s competitive.” Listeners will be able to tune into local stations through a geotargeted listening tab on the site, which all parties expect to help monetize the streams to local listeners.

NEWEST XM RECEIVER: THE BLACKBERRY Instead of trying to convince consumers to buy pricey devices to listen to your content, maybe the idea is to get your content to devices listeners already own and love. XM has announced a plan to deliver 20 music and comedy channels to Blackberry devices for $7.99/month. The models that will be XM-capable are the Curve, the Pearl, and the 8800 and 8700 series. AT&T and Alltel customers can also get XM content on certain smart phones.

$12.5 MILLION MORE FUNDING FOR CHUMBY The Chumby player, which made news recently with the launch of a somewhat unorthodox monetization plan [RAIN coverage here], is back in the news. This time it’s with a more traditional way of making money: a $12.5 million second round of financing. The cash will help Chumby Industries build out its “Chumby Network”, which Digital Music News describes as consisting of “user-generated and commercial content across entertainment, news, and weather… Early-stage content providers include CBS, MTV Networks, MySpace, and AOL’s SHOUTcast.”

DIGITAL RADIODISASTER” IN UK The Register calls the situation “a disaster” and that since the BBC ended it’s ad campaign for the holidays in 2005, receiver sales have fallen “off a cliff.” It’s DAB, the UK counterpart to HD Radio, and the paper reports things aren’t looking good for the platform. “Listening to the BBC’s internet radio streams jumped 22% in one month on the back of the launch of the streaming iPlayer. That’s six times faster than the rate at which DAB radio set sales are increasing, and the internet radio streams weren’t even being directly advertised. This shows that concentrating solely on DAB is holding back digital radio take-up as a whole.” Read more here.

STUDY: STREAMING CONTENT WORTH $70 BILLION THROUGH 2013 An Insight Research study indicates streaming video and music will generate $70 billion in revenue over the next six years. The predictions concern Internet streams, “IPTV,” and mobile content. Insight says the market will grow at a compound annual rate of almost 29% through 2013. The revenue includes both ad sales and “on-demand” and subscription revenue. An InformationWeek.com article with more is here.

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