Of the presentations made at this year’s Next Radio conference, one stood out as an inspiring insight into the future of radio.
Managing director of Radioplayer, Michael Hill has had an accomplished career at the BBC and commercial stations in the UK. His company seeks to develop ongoing growth for UK radio by simplifying the user experience across all new mediums. This started with the development of a standard web player used by the BBC and many commercial stations in the UK.
Within 18 months we had helped to grow online listening by 40%, it is the best web player in the world.Michael Hill
In his presentation, Michael discusses how radio’s prior ease of access has been eroded by listeners multi-platform consumption of content. His analogy identifies how smart-phones switch seamlessly between 3G, 4G and WiFi without user interaction. However listeners must make a conscious decision on which platform they use to consume radio content. He argues the time and effort this presents can cause a barrier to listeners.
Radioplayer plans to end this with a new device designed to simplify radio. Their multi-platform receiver is installed in vehicles and controlled using a smart-phone with bluetooth. The user simply chooses which brand they desire, and the device automatically chooses the best platform at the current time. The receiver adds value with traffic information and hands-free functionality.
Is this combination the future of in-car radio?