||Smartphones Moving From Telephony-Centric to Hub-Centric
As consumers use smartphones less for voice conversations and connectivity, and more as a display for controlling remote devices, two products have been announced at the Consumer Electronics Show this week affecting radio.
Livio Connect and FM Connect
Livio announced its new technology, FM Connect, which enables in-car FM radio listeners to safely send
feedback to and interact with FM broadcasters and sponsors from the dashboard through a Bluetooth-connected smartphone. All that's required is an FM car stereo, a Bluetooth-connected smartphone, and Livio Connect.
More information is available at www.livioradio.com
Ford and jacApps
Ford Motor Company announced that jacAPPS will be the recommended mobile app development house for their new Ford Developer Program. The company has been chosen to provide development and technical support to third party developers wanting to create voice-activated smartphone apps for Ford SYNC© AppLink™.
Using SYNC© voice commands along with steering wheel and radio buttons, drivers can enjoy a live audio stream or their favorite podcasts from within the mobile app. This is a significant breakthrough for the radio industry that will allow AM/FM stations to have parity on the vehicle's digital screen.
"This is a major breakthrough for the radio industry," jacAPPS President Fred Jacobs observes. "Radio and cars are like peanut butter and jelly -- always connected. We will now be able to take mobile applications and provide code to allow them to be fully integrated with SYNC© AppLink™, gain important real estate on the cars' screen, voice command functionality, and more. This gives radio stations an important piece of digital real estate in the one area where the lion's share of listening takes place -- the car."
For instance, individual radio stations no longer have to be concerned about their place on the dashboards of "connected cars" based on jacAPPS experience. Owners of Ford SYNC© AppLink™-enabled vehicles will now be able to access local radio station apps.
Greater Media radio stations that are live in the iTunes App Store and Google Play market with SYNC© AppLink™ functionality include:
"We are thrilled that our radio stations will be easy to find, conveniently-connected and seamlessly voice-controlled in Ford SYNC© AppLink™-equipped cars," said Greater Media Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Peter Smyth. "We anticipate being an integral part of the connected car and offering added functionality to our heritage brands."
- Detroit – WRIF, WCSX, WMGC
- Boston – WROR, WBOS, WMJX, WKLB, 96.9 FM
- New Jersey – WDHA, WRAT
- Philadelphia – WMMR, WMGK, WBEN, The Fanatic
- Charlotte – WBT-AM, WLNK
More information can be found at www.jacAPPS.com or at www.developer.ford.com.
(Source: John Potter, SVP/Professional Development, RAB)