Samsung partners with NextRadio to unlock FM radio chip in upcoming phones


It seems now things are changing as Samsung is partnering with NextRadio to unlock FM chips in smartphones.

"Samsung should be lauded for taking this important step", NextRadio President Paul Brenner said in a statement. "They are providing their customers a more engaging, immersive radio experience and, as importantly, a means to connect with life-saving information in emergencies". With the FM chip enabled, you will be able to access local FM radio broadcasts right from your phone. According to NextRadio, Motorola and Alcatel are two others who have taken steps to "meet consumer demand and [provide] a lifeline in emergency situations".

NextRadio was developed by TagStation, which uses its cloud services to provide radio connectivity to FM-enabled devices through a device's built-in tuner and the internet. This uses less data and battery power than connecting to radio apps, though of course, there's less control over what you listen to. Founded in 2013, TagStation, LLC is headquartered in Indianapolis, IN with offices in Indianapolis and Chicago, IL. LG announced recently that it was going to unlock the FM chips on its handsets a few months back in partnership with NextRadio.

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The company was (wrongly) accused of blocking the FM radio chips in iPhone handsets, but was quick to point out the iPhone 7, iPhone 8 don't even have them. It is simply a matter of smartphone manufacturers enabling the chip for that functionality. Unfortunately, that probably means the decision doesn't apply retroactively, so numerous smartphones that are now available in the United States will not have their FM Radio chips enabled.

Further reports reveal that the activation will not require any additional hardware, especially since smartphones are typically made with support for FM chips.