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TuneIn Adds FM Tuner

Internet radio app developer to utilize phone FM tuner

We get plenty of press releases about apps across our desk here at RW. But here’s one that attempts to combine the power of online and traditional broadcast radio.

TuneIn, the Internet radio portal and developer of Internet radio apps formerly called RadioTime, says it has developed an app for interfacing with the FM tuner in a cell phone, smartphone or MP3 player.

The app currently is limited to the Windows Phone 7 platform; work on BlackBerry and Android versions is proceeding.

“The TuneIn Radio app for Windows Phone automatically uses the device’s FM tuner when the local signal is strong or switches to the stream when needed over-the-air reception is poor or not available,” the company stated.

“The FM tuner permits Windows Phone users to listen to any local FM station, not just those with compatible Internet streams, and the audio can be clearer and more reliable depending on the stream. Additionally, over-the-air broadcasts are available in the event of an emergency that may disable Internet and cellular connections.”

The release notes another benefit of offering both: Some Internet feeds differ from the over-the-air versions, notably in the case of special events such as baseball games (which can’t be carried by Internet feeds due to contractual reasons).

TuneIn founder and CEO Bill Moore said half of all TuneIn listening is to a local station. “The Internet connection still delivers live song information, games and programs, Twitter feeds, recommendations for other stations and programs, on-demand programs and global radio content.”