Radio Simulcast Stream Use Relatively Flat

… in a smartphone world, concludes Edison Research
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Compared to Pandora’s growth over the past five years, radio simulcasts on their streams aren’t cutting it.

So concludes Edison Research President Larry Rosin in a recent blog. Focusing on a trial he recently conducted with audience research consultants in Austria and Germany, Rosin says the target audience preferred customizable radio apps over simulcast streams of broadcast radio.

Looking at Triton Digital data for both desktop and mobile listening, Rosin noted that “Pandora shows breakaway growth” while the streams of iHeartRadio, CBS Radio, NPR, Cumulus and Cox combined are relatively flat. That’s due to the proliferation of smartphones, concludes Rosin.

He added that if all streaming-only players were added to the Pandora line and all radio station streams were added to the “radio” line, the results would be “even more dramatic.”

Kurt Hanson, chief executive officer of AccuRadio.com and publisher of the RAIN newsletter, echoed these thoughts at the RAIN conference last week, noting that listening for broadcasters who simply stream simulcasts is “stagnant.”

“Simulcasts didn’t work for FM either,” said Hanson. What helped stimulate FM listening, according to Hanson, was when in 1967, the FCC declared that certain size markets couldn’t duplicate more than 50% of their AM programming on FM. Afterwards, FM “took off with new brands and products designed for the new medium.”

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