Nowadays, virtually everybody owns a smartphone that is chock full of a plethora of chips and sensors. Said chips and sensors make things like LTE connectivity and fitness tracking possible. Despite this, there is one surprising radio missing from almost all modern smartphones in the Unites States, FM radio chips. Well, the FM radio isn't missing from smartphones, there is actually one built into almost all smartphones. The thing is that the smartphone manufacturers have got into the habit of disabling the FM radios.
Now, in a move that seemingly came out of nowhere, AT&T will soon be activating the FM radio chips of Android smartphones on their network. In fact, AT&T is soon going to be making active FM radios for Android smartphones on their network a mandatory feature. This news comes from both NextRadio and TagStation, two groups that actively promote FM apps and the means necessary to support them. AT&T will be pulling this off by working with smartphone manufacturers to get the FM radio chips in their devices activated. The blue carrier is planning on having all new Android smartphones released in 2016 on their network having active FM radio chips. AT&T even plans on having some Android smartphones being ready for the FM radio chip activation by as early as the end of this year.
This news about AT&T has a few businesses excited, including the National Association of Broadcasters. They just put out a statement stating that this move by AT&T marks a new beginning in the world of mobile technology. The National Association of Broadcasters also stated that smartphones having active FM radio chips will provide new features that will appeal to the younger demographic. This is definitely an interesting move by AT&T, but a good one nonetheless. It will hopefully promote other carriers such as T-Mobile and Sprint to follow in suite. Until then, if you are planning on getting a new Android smartphone on AT&T's network next year, you should have an active FM radio. This combined with Apple bringing about their new and quite popular Beats One 24-hour live radio station seem to be showing a shift back towards live radio in the technology world.