Cell phone radio

A Canadian wireless company is offering subscribers more than 1,500 podcasts via their cell phones. The catalogue of podcasts will updated throughout the day as new feeds are received, bringing fresh content to subscribers continually. Unlike terrestrial radio, though, it won’t be free. It’ll cost subscribers $5 per month. But then subscribers can download their choice of podcasts for immediate listening, and save the ones they want to play again later on their phone. [iloveradio.org]

When I started doing affiliate relations back in the early eighties, Don Osborn said something that I have never forgotten: There is no dead air. Every minute is filled with something (music, news, sports, weather, etc). To add some of our network programming, a radio station must take something off the air. My challenge was to persuade the station decision-makers their listeners would be better served by our programming than what they were currently airing.

What does this have to do with cell phone radio? Every minute I spend listening to a podcast on my my cell phone (or nano) is a minute I’m not listening to my local radio station. The listener is now the program director but he/she still has the same 24-hour clock. Do I listen to The Ricky Gervais Show on my cell phone…or the local morning show on KXYZ?

There’s a lot of smart radio guys out there. I have to believe they understand this. The “cell phone radio” story reminded me of an interview I did with Mary Quass last year, in which she saw this coming.

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