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Outdated Technologies: FM/AM Radio

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Old March 13th, 2015 (6:26 AM). Edited March 13th, 2015 by Tsutarja.
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Week #1: FM/AM Radio


Yeah, remember when you actually had to turn a dial to a certain frequency to listen to music? It seems like nobody does that anymore, now that services like Spotify, Google Play, iTunes Radio, and Pandora exist, right? With those online services coming into existence, alongside 3G/4G mobile data technology, it seems that nobody has to listen to the radio anymore to get their share of music.

So some questions for thought:
  • Who still uses a radio (via FM and/or AM frequencies) to listen to music?
  • Do you use a radio occasionally, regularly, all the time, or how often in general if you still use one?
  • Do you believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime?

If you have any ideas for future discussions for Outdated Technologies, send me a message!
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Old March 13th, 2015 (7:46 AM).
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Who still uses a radio (via FM and/or AM frequencies) to listen to music?

I do! But not nearly as often now that I've got a Bluetooth system integrated into my car. Though sometimes I'm bored of what I can access via my phone and want to hear something else. A lot of people use radio to listen to talk shows instead.

Do you use a radio occasionally, regularly, all the time, or how often in general if you still use one?

I use a radio at least two or three times a week, though usually only in the car and usually only to listen to sports talk shows (which is about 15% of my commutes in a given week).

Do you believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime?
I personally kind of doubt it. It has weathered quite a bit, and, unlike TV, it has personalities unique to each station that can help it weather the rise of internet radio. Most FM/AM stations currently have internet radio shows as it is, actually. And unlike internet radio, there's no mobile data plan required to get it in your car.
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Old March 13th, 2015 (8:23 AM).
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The only thing resembling a radio that I've touched in recent times to actually listen to would be my mp3 player, since that does have an AM/FM function on it...and that was mostly to see just how well it worked. I do still have a radio clock that I theoretically could use to listen to music, but it's tucked away in my bedroom and is mostly just used as an alarm on sundays.

The biggest problem I have with AM/FM radio is not even what's needed to listen to them - I have no problem with buying a radio of some kind to listen - it's that whatever I can listen to is limited by what stations happen to be in range. And, frankly, I've never been too thrilled with the choice of radio stations in my area. That's one of the main reasons I turned to online radio in the first place: there's so much more control over what I'm able to listen to that there's absolutely no need for me to rely on oldschool radio anymore.

I haven't thought about AM/FM radio disappearing, but I honestly don't think its time is up quite yet. Kind of like a "if it isn't gone yet, it's not going to go away yet" type of deal.
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Old March 13th, 2015 (11:03 AM).
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    Here in the UK FM/AM radio is still quite popular. However I hope internet radio replaces it fully as regular commercial radio is to poor quality (to much reliance on top 40 music, poor choice of music genres, to many adverts and the presence of DJs).

    Who still uses a radio (via FM and/or AM frequencies) to listen to music?
    People listening in cars or at work mostly I would say.

    Do you use a radio occasionally, regularly, all the time, or how often in general if you still use one??
    If I am Driving yes I do.

    Do you believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime?
    I hope so, but I think it will last for a long while yet. When Internet radio becomes mainstream (i.e. standard in cars or home radios) people will abandon normal radio channels for the Internet ones that are non stop music (and no DJ's) and channels that play a larger verity of music genres.

    I think the current radio industry is doing all it can to keep FM/AM (or Digital) alive because they know independent internet radio is a massive threat to commercial radio (and even a threat to record producers who rely on commercial radio airtime to get their records out).

    Local radio is the greatest offender in my opinion far to much trivial claptrap from DJ's and not enough music.
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    Old March 13th, 2015 (1:46 PM).
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    I do! But only in a car, or at breakfast or cooking. Because last Christmas, we happened to get a toaster with built in radio xD So morning routine now is to roll into the kitchen and turn on the radio when I pop my bread into the toaster. In the car, it's most often nice to listen to my own playlists, but sometimes you want to hear people talk instead. Or just be surprised by what comes on.

    That's the key point, I think. With radio, you let go of the control. Sure, it might be nice to choose what to listen to, but sometimes you just want to listen to randomness. You can discover new music, listen to news without having to look or really focus on it.

    In one way or another, I think the broadcasts will live on. Not necessarily in an AM/FM radio format though.
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    Old March 14th, 2015 (2:12 PM).
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    I still actively listen to radio my self. I own an HD radio as well (that sits atop my desk), which is cool because of the digital signals and more stations to choose from! I'm probably one of the many people in this world that actually wishes that radio was preserved and never actually phased out, because I'm horrible when it comes to making my own playlist.

    Although I can easily use Pandora for listening to music, I feel that radio is a more portable option because at least you don't have to worry about reliance on an internet connection to get music. There's also interactivity with listeners to catch attention between songs (the DJ), which is another plus; I honestly cannot stand stations that have automation with music. Even though most DJs these days are no longer live (but instead audio-tracked), having a voice on the radio at least makes the experience feel more interactive.
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    Old March 15th, 2015 (4:30 AM).
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    Do you use a radio occasionally, regularly, all the time, or how often in general if you still use one?

    I usually listen to radio music either when I'm gaming or studying - i.e. in the background. I don't have to worry about setting the music myself since it's predefined.

    Do you believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime?

    Let me get something straight: simplistic DOES NOT equal to outdated. A technology being outdated means there has been a better alternative created, which greatly outmatches the previous one. Examples include the transition from typewriters to keyboards, blackboards to whiteboards, or dial-up internet to broadband and wi-fi connections.

    FM and AM channels work on virtually every electronic device now - MP3 players, phones, laptops, handheld consoles, heck even TVs. It's also relatively simple to install a device that can read radio frequencies anywhere - for example in a vehicle. They're also live-feed which can be good to deliver news quickly to people. On that last point, radios are used a lot for emergency purposes, for example in the case of of a flood or earthquake.

    If radios disappear, it won't be until a long time. Most developing and undeveloped countires use this system as their main source of news and entertainment, and almost everyone uses the radio in their car while driving. The wide variety of channels that most countries have means most people will find something that suits them, whether it's pop music, classic music, news, etc.
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    Old March 15th, 2015 (5:57 AM).
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    I still listen to FM radio at times (mostly on my parent's car), even though I seldom use it anymore because I've been often relying on internet nowadays.

    And I think FM Radio won't disappear in my country atm because FM is still popular. I'm not sure about AM Radio, though.
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    Old March 15th, 2015 (7:32 AM).
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    I still do use FM/AM radio, if the one in my car counts!

    Usually, I find myself tuning into country music channel, since those kind of music intrigue me. From time to time, I also look into news. I wish there had been something solely for metal songs, but unfortunately, at least in New York, there doesn't seem to be any at the moment; would have been great if there were, for sure.

    My current phone also seems to have this radio application installed, which doesn't utilize Internet connection at all to stream things; it functions like just another average radio. Every now and again when I'm outside in the morning, I do use that one as well.

    Do I believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime? It's kind of tough to tell, really. Currently, these kind of tech seem to be rather unpopular due to better alternatives that we have, and if they continue to advance, I feel anything might be possible.
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    Old March 15th, 2015 (8:40 AM).
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    I listen to FM radio quite a lot.

    My alarm clock is set to play the radio, which I leave on untill I leave the house. I usually turn it on whenever I'm in my room. I listen to the radio whenever I'm on the move as well ( be it in my parent's car or using the FM radio on my phone)


    I like listening to the radio because other than music it also providses some good entertainment and keep you updated with the latest news. (I do believe most radio shows here in the Netherlands are far better the majority of tv shows)
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    Old March 15th, 2015 (9:14 AM).
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      Quote:
      Originally Posted by Foxrally;8656390

      Let me get something straight: simplistic [B
      DOES NOT[/B] equal to outdated. A technology being outdated means there has been a better alternative created, which greatly outmatches the previous one. Examples include the transition from typewriters to keyboards, blackboards to whiteboards, or dial-up internet to broadband and wi-fi connections.


      I think its more the format of (AM/FM) radio channels that outdated rather than the technology.
      In they way there is a lack of choice of music to listen to, filling up airtime with a DJ rather than playing music and far to long and frequent advert brakes.
      All things Internet radio/streaming sevices and I-pods mostly do not do.
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      Old March 15th, 2015 (10:45 AM).
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      Quote:
      Originally Posted by Gardevoir the Dragon Slayer View Post
      Here in the UK FM/AM radio is still quite popular. However I hope internet radio replaces it fully as regular commercial radio is to poor quality (to much reliance on top 40 music, poor choice of music genres, to many adverts and the presence of DJs).
      I think DAB radio is going to be the first thing to take over FM radio considering it's the technology that is being adapted into new cars, which I think is the biggest source of people tuning into the radio.

      Who still uses a radio (via FM and/or AM frequencies) to listen to music?
      I listen to the radio on the car for the news and when I've listen to my own CD's for so long they become stale.
      Do you use a radio occasionally, regularly, all the time, or how often in general if you still use one?
      Pretty much most of the time I'm in the car which happens to be on most days of the week.
      Do you believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime?

      It will soon enough if given a few more years when DAB radio becomes commonplace and becomes increasingly affordable. There's more stations on DAB so it's looking to be set in the future as the norm.
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      Old March 15th, 2015 (11:17 AM).
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        Quote:
        Originally Posted by Dter ic View Post
        I think DAB radio is going to be the first thing to take over FM radio considering it's the technology that is being adapted into new cars, which I think is the biggest source of people tuning into the radio.

        Who still uses a radio (via FM and/or AM frequencies) to listen to music?
        I listen to the radio on the car for the news and when I've listen to my own CD's for so long they become stale.
        Do you use a radio occasionally, regularly, all the time, or how often in general if you still use one?
        Pretty much most of the time I'm in the car which happens to be on most days of the week.
        Do you believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime?

        It will soon enough if given a few more years when DAB radio becomes commonplace and becomes increasingly affordable. There's more stations on DAB so it's looking to be set in the future as the norm.
        They have been trying to push DAB for years, but its never really caught on, it makes more sense to skip DAB and make internet radios standard in cars.
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        Old March 15th, 2015 (4:32 PM).
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          I stopped listening to FM radio. I won't listen to AM radio (Poor quality, I'm sorry I'm an audiophile)

          I got tired of the reliance of the charts on the FM airwaves. Practically all of the stations now are like that. Smaller/cheaper tuners often have very difficult times picking up lower power stations locally and therefore there are only maybe 5 or 6 high power stations that you can pick up because they are actually trying. Furthermore most of this area has moved to a Digital FM scheme...so I'd need a special tuner. This makes most of the cheapo tuners you can buy anywhere useless and limited to evangelical ranting or tejano/tex-mex/Spanish Language music which isn't my thing.
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          Old March 16th, 2015 (1:43 PM).
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          Quote:
          Originally Posted by Gardevoir the Dragon Slayer View Post
          They have been trying to push DAB for years, but its never really caught on, it makes more sense to skip DAB and make internet radios standard in cars.
          It's relatively new so because of the cost it isn't as widespread but given some time will eventually get pushed everywhere - look where bluetooth is now.

          I don't know how you're going to implement it in cars if it requires internet access :P: Not everyone wants to use their phone to stream internet radio in the car and if you want to, bluetooth is an option.
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          Old March 16th, 2015 (2:00 PM).
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            Since when is FM/AM radio outdated? The USA isn't the center of the world. Plenty of good FM radio elsewhere, sports and news radio broadcast and yes, music.

            I can see FM/AM being phased out in favor of internet radio, but it'll take a while before mobile internet is accessible enough to everyone at a good price.
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            Old March 16th, 2015 (2:49 PM).
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              Quote:
              Originally Posted by Dter ic View Post
              It's relatively new so because of the cost it isn't as widespread but given some time will eventually get pushed everywhere - look where bluetooth is now.

              I don't know how you're going to implement it in cars if it requires internet access :P: Not everyone wants to use their phone to stream internet radio in the car and if you want to, bluetooth is an option.
              I am sure the streaming will become possible in the short term future, the demand is certainly there (for phone internet at least anyway).

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              Old March 16th, 2015 (5:40 PM).
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                Wow... Surprised to see so many people who still listen to music on old school FM here. o_O{D:}

                Who still uses a radio (via FM and/or AM frequencies) to listen to music?

                Well, my parents still swear by FM (especially my dad, who's always hated paying for XM), but ever since my mom got a new car that had XM, she's been listening to that almost exclusively.

                Do you use a radio occasionally, regularly, all the time, or how often in general if you still use one?

                Not in years. I hate commercials with a passion, and I'd rather drive in silence than listen to 200 song playlists of the same tired hits over and over, with obnoxious DJ/commercial chatter sandwiched inbetween. Plus, many of the genres I love to listen to are just nowhere to be found on FM, such as pre-Nirvana college rock or pre-Beatles oldies (most "oldies" stations here focus on the 70s-80s, nowadays). Yet, we have a million teen pop, country, and rap stations... :rolleyes2:

                Do you believe that FM/AM radio will actually go away in our lifetime?

                Heck, yeah. Once internet radio becomes more widely accessible, AM/FM is a goner, especially since it's already occupying valuable bandwidth that could be used for other things. (If they could kill analog TV for that reason, then I don't see what's stopping them from killing analog radio.) Wi-fi's already making its way into cars, so it's only a matter of time.
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                Old March 16th, 2015 (6:40 PM).
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                  Well my driver loves listening to the radio most of time when I'm going home from work or going to place and it most of the time though. FM may still survive, but I don't think AM will due to bad quality and other recording stuff
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                  Old March 17th, 2015 (8:47 AM).
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                  Um. Sorry. What? Nobody uses an FM radio to listen to music anymore? Frankly that's something of a moot point, at least here. Yes, the way we listen to music and radio stations has evolved over the years, but an actual fm radio is still a common fixture in my house, and it is used regularly by my family and friends when we hit the road. True, the selection of music has dropped off the side of a very tall, uncreative cliff since the turn of the latest century, but I like to use the radio for local news and night time debates. It doesn't have to be all music, all the time.

                  I hope that FM radio prevails well into this century. I'd hate to see it get phased out like analogue (but say, aren't digital signals still transmitted in analogue, and get converted back to digital at destination? That's what I heard, anyway), as I really do not like this 'always on and connected' society we're becoming.
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                  Old March 17th, 2015 (11:07 AM).
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                    Quote:
                    Originally Posted by LeviathanX View Post
                    an actual fm radio is still a common fixture in my house, and it is used regularly by my family and friends when we hit the road. True, the selection of music has dropped off the side of a very tall, uncreative cliff since the turn of the latest century, but I like to use the radio for local news and night time debates. It doesn't have to be all music, all the time.
                    Bleh, I have an iPhone if I want news and opinion on the go. You can always just turn on the TV for local news, as well.

                    When I'm driving, the only thing I want to hear less than bad, overplayed music is chatter, regardless of if it's news or a dumb commercial. As a result, I often drive in silence, which can actually be quite relaxing, in fact.

                    (My car is a late 70s model, so hooking up an MP3 or even popping in a CD isn't exactly an option. Ironically, popping in a CD isn't an option with my mom's brand new car either. My, how times have changed! {XD})

                    Quote:
                    Originally Posted by LeviathanX View Post
                    I hope that FM radio prevails well into this century. I'd hate to see it get phased out like analogue (but say, aren't digital signals still transmitted in analogue, and get converted back to digital at destination? That's what I heard, anyway), as I really do not like this 'always on and connected' society we're becoming.
                    Digital and analog TV signals are completely different. Digital signals are stored in the form of a gazillion 1s and 0s, which gives you a picture that looks clearer and uses less bandwidth, but degrades much faster.

                    It's only a matter of time until old school broadcast radio is shut down in the same way that old school broadcast TV was. The UK has already begun the transition to digital radio, for example.
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                    Old March 17th, 2015 (12:00 PM).
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                      Quote:
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                      Bleh, I have an iPhone if I want news and opinion on the go. You can always just turn on the TV for local news, as well.

                      When I'm driving, the only thing I want to hear less than bad, overplayed music is chatter, regardless of if it's news or a dumb commercial. As a result, I often drive in silence, which can actually be quite relaxing, in fact.

                      (My car is a late 70s model, so hooking up an MP3 or even popping in a CD isn't exactly an option. Ironically, popping in a CD isn't an option with my mom's brand new car either. My, how times have changed! {XD})



                      Digital and analog TV signals are completely different. Digital signals are stored in the form of a gazillion 1s and 0s, which gives you a picture that looks clearer and uses less bandwidth, but degrades much faster.

                      It's only a matter of time until old school broadcast radio is shut down in the same way that old school broadcast TV was. The UK has already begun the transition to digital radio, for example.
                      The trouble with adopting Digital radio is that why the technology and sound quality is better, It just offers the same old poor content that is on Analogue (Top 40 music padded out with Commercials and DJ's talking utter clap trap or sports commentary).

                      What's needed is more choice in terms of content something Internet radio has been doing for over 10 years.

                      It really hard to find a channel that plays just music that's not interrupted by an egotistical DJ, the news or sports coverage and of course adverts (the only mainstream stations in the UK without adverts are the BBC ones but they are the worse offenders in the other issues I mentioned).

                      So without quality content being broadcast the technology used is practically irrelevant!!!!
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                      Old March 17th, 2015 (12:46 PM).
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                        Quote:
                        Originally Posted by Gardevoir the Dragon Slayer View Post
                        The trouble with adopting Digital radio is that why the technology and sound quality is better, It just offers the same old poor content that is on Analogue (Top 40 music padded out with Commercials and DJ's talking utter clap trap or sports commentary).
                        Unfortunately, that's mostly the case with digital broadcast TV, too. The quality is better, but the content is pretty much the same old cesspool of soap operas, talk shows, reality trash, and other lowest common denominator programming.

                        Satellite radio tries to offer somewhat of a solution by offering a large variety of programming, most of which is commercial free, but it requires a subscription to use, so its adoption has been slow. (And, the music channels, while far more diverse than FM, still lack the variety and depth found in internet radio.)

                        The best solution in the long run will simply be expanding the reach of internet radio. As I said, there are already cars with wi-fi access coming out, and that number is sure to increase in the coming decades. That will be the first major step towards internet radio replacing FM for good.
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                        Old March 17th, 2015 (3:05 PM).
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                        I still listen to the radio in the car, and at my grandparents. I still don't quite like the idea of playing music off my phone in the car, I'm weird, haha.

                        I wish my phone came with a FM radio receiver, i wish all my phones had one, its not a deciding feature but still nice.
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                        Old March 20th, 2015 (9:48 AM).
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                        You guys rock! This was an excellent start to the first week, and coming up soon is week #2 :D

                        Y'all are still free to use this topic until after it expires as well :)
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