- Samsung is teaming up with the NextRadio app to enable FM radio on its future Galaxy smartphones.
- Once enabled, FM radio will be available to Samsung users in the US and Canada.
- Apple has removed the FM Chip from its more recent iPhones.
Future Samsung phones will have a feature that many iPhone users can no longer access: FM radio.
Samsung recently announced its collaboration with TagStation to enable FM radio on its Galaxy smartphones through its NextRadio app. The NextRadio app would Samsung users will be able to access FM radio without pulling excess data or battery power from their smartphones. The “feature” will be available to Samsung users in the US and Canada.
FM radio has declined in popularity due to the advent of music apps and streaming services, but a considerable number of smartphones still contain the chip that allows handsets to broadcast radio signals. It is simply a matter of smartphone manufacturers enabling the chip for that functionality.
Some smartphone users with an affinity for old-school technology may appreciate having access to FM radio, but TagStation president Paul Brenner also said in a press release that having access to FM radio frequencies could benefit people in emergency situations. He noted that access to FM radio aided those affected by recent natural disasters in Puerto Rico, Houston and the Florida coast.
Many in developing countries rely on FM radio access on smartphones. Approximately 44% of US smartphones have their FM chips enabled, according to the FCC. But many iPhone users don’t have the same luxury, as Apple confirmed to the FCC in September 2017 that the iPhone 7 and iPhone 8 do not include the FM radio chip. Apple did note that older iPhones still have the chip.
However small, this feature is likely one that consumers can expect in Samsung’s upcoming Galaxy S9 smartphone, which the manufacturer confirmed will be announced in late February.