Chicago – NextRadio will update its interactive radio application for FM radio-equipped Android smartphones to offer a visual tuning interface.
The Live Guide feature lets listeners see what’s playing on all local stations at the same time, a spokesperson said. “You see your favorite song, click on it, and instantly hear its live broadcast,” she explained. “Blindly searching the radio dial will soon be a thing of the past.”
The updated app will be available Oct. 17 in Google Play for smartphones equipped with an analog-FM chip. NextRadio, which debuted in 2013 on select Sprint phones, is currently preloaded on 29 Sprint phones and one tablet. It’s also available on all new HTC One phones from all major carriers, the HTC One remix from Verzon, and the HTC Desire 610 from AT&T.
Major updates to the app can be viewed on this video at http://tagstation.com/videos/nextradio-feature-reel-2014/.
The NextRadio app lets users browse local stations by genre or frequency. The guide includes radio station logos, slogans and programming descriptions. Traditionalists can select stations through a traditional tuner interface. Users can also set favorites and view recently played stations.
Sixty-five percent of all FM radio stations are represented in the NextRadio app either with full interactivity provided by TagStation, a cloud-based service, or with a station-specific logo, the spokesperson said. More than 1,600 stations are providing full TagStation interactivity, reaching anywhere from 60-90 percent of the listending share in the top 50 markets.
Stations that sign up with TagStation have their branding images, call letters, station name, slogan and genre data appear in the NextRadio app at no cost. Select broadcast groups have also registered with TagStation to offer additional services, including the display of show details and the album art and artist information of the song playing.
From the app, users can also purchase the song that is playing, and they can call or text the stations that they’re playing to provide feedback.
NextRadio is supported by the top 25 radio broadcasting groups and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB).
A headset wire serves as the FM chip’s antenna.