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Sprint to Release More FM-Enabled Smartphones Friday

More to come about NextRadio being integrated in other ways, like the digital dash

Sprint is releasing three more smartphones this Friday with FM capability. So says Emmis, which characterizes it as Sprint’s biggest device launch yet, doubling the number of NextRadio-enabled devices.

The new phones coming this week are: the LG G2, the Samsung Galaxy Mega and the Samsung Galaxy S4 Mini. Emmis says later this month, Virgin, which is part of the Sprint Network, is due to release a NextRadio-enabled pre-paid smartphone. “The pay-as-you-go/no-contract market is inherently bandwidth-capped, so the app, consuming next to nothing, is a way for that user base to enjoy listening without hesitation,” says the NextRadio team in its latest blog.

Sprint continues to add more information to its NextRadio landing page as part of the company’s ongoing marketing efforts.

Emmis has applauded individual stations and on-air hosts for talking up the product. “Being able to demonstrate something tangible rather than just an idea makes a very compelling case to other radio groups and wireless carriers,” according to Emmis.

Taking stock of NextRadio’s three months in the market, Emmis says there have been 61,000 app downloads and the app has an 83% retention rate. More than 4,700 radio stations have been tuned to through the NextRadio app.

Going forward, the industry will begin to hear more about the technology behind NextRadio being integrated in other capacities. “Just like it delivers a rich experience to the smartphone, TagStation can also deliver an enhanced experience to the digital dashboards of the future — a radio experience that fits in seamlessly with the newest dashboard apps and services,” according to Emmis, which adds that attendees at NAB Futures this month were given a chance to see a prototype developed by Ford with NextRadio.