The Rise of Internet Radio Streaming
Radio was one of the first forms of mass entertainment. It has since significantly evolved over the last century. Most people remember a time when the primary source of international news was the BBC. Today, radio has gone online. This is not surprising when you consider that all aspects of human life are moving online.
What is Online Radio?
Contrary to popular opinion, online radio has been around for a couple of decades. Carl Malamud is credited with creating the first online radio back in 1993. However, Malamud’s radio was not very popular because it targeted technology enthusiasts and academicians. These topics are not popular with the vast majority of the population. As a result, the radio was listened to by very few people.
The lukewarm beginnings did not stop the rise of internet radio streaming. Instead, it inspired the creation of other streaming channels. A few years after Malamud had created the first internet radio, there were more than ten online radio stations. Many of these broadcasted music festivals to online listeners.
It wasn’t long before significant companies such as Microsoft created unique audio players for online radio listeners. Soon, companies such as RealAudio introduced 24-hour radio streaming. RealAudio had developed tools to broadcast online content smoothly.
Since then, online radio streaming has grown in leaps and bounds. Corporations and organizations have discovered the many opportunities that they can get if they broadcast on the internet. Moreover, new technologies such as 5G make it cheaper to start and run an online streaming radio. Simultaneously, organizations can use cloud computing solutions to provide high-quality streaming.
Basics of Online Radio Streaming
Online radio is any radio reaching its audience via the internet. The audience will access the radio station through websites or applications on a mobile device or computer. It is straightforward to access these radio stations, and they feel similar to the typical FM radio stations. Similarly, most listeners confess that online radio stations provide better audio quality.
The Evolution of Online Radio Streaming
WXYC radio station was the first digital radio connected to an FM radio. As a result, it was the first radio to be available throughout the world. It’s immense success encouraged other brands to develop better online streaming applications.
The applications reached London in 1996 when Virgin Radio moved all its programming to the internet. Virgin Radio’s success was supported by several innovations, such as the new HTTP protocols. Other innovations enabled companies to minimize bandwidth usage.
Online Radio Opportunities
The landscape of online radio streaming offers many exciting opportunities for everybody. Mass communication professionals believe that radio streaming can provide content similar to books, videos, and television. Others believe that online radio is better because you can listen to online radio while engaging in other activities.
One significant advantage of starting an online radio station is that you can cater to a specific niche. You’ll be surprised by how people become regular listeners when they discover your familiar content. This is an excellent way to create a new community with shared interests.
It is not just freelancers and corporations starting radio streaming. Established brands such as Virgin Radio and the BBC are major players in internet streaming services. For instance, the BBC has the iPlayer where you can listen to their radio via the internet. Alternatively, you can play previous shows that you missed. This is a unique advantage because you don’t have to tune in to a specific program at a specific time. In fact, there is no other radio technology that offers such a high level of flexibility.
The Role of Data in the Rise of Online Radio
Data has been a critical component of online radio streaming. The availability of data allows companies to offer customized experiences to their listeners. Many popular online radio stations have implemented advanced big data analytic solutions to enhance their content delivery. These companies can determine the type of programs that people want to listen to. If a particular program is not popular, the company can modify or abandon it. On the other hand, if they determine that a particular radio program is popular, they can channel more resources to it.
Consequently, any future growth of online radio streaming will depend on the availability and utilization of big data. This is also a good thing for listeners because they can expect high-quality experiences from radio stations.
Why Should You Listen to an Online Radio?
Internet radio is a novel innovation with several applications. Its main advantage is flexibility and diversity. A typical physical radio will give you access to a few radio stations. Thankfully, you can access thousands of online radio stations on the internet. Moreover, you can access any of these radio stations from any location in the world. In short, your location does not impact audio quality. Some of these radio stations provide invaluable advice, such as how you can choose the best shallow well pump for your needs.
It’s not just listeners benefiting from online radio streaming. Traditional radio companies have realized that online streaming is cheaper and more comfortable. Companies don’t have to invest in expensive equipment and broadcasting satellites. Besides, a company can broadcast more than one radio station from a single URL or application.
The proliferation of Wi-Fi systems and home internet connections means that the cost of setting up this type of entertainment is low. Unfortunately, if you don’t have a mobile connection, you may not listen to this type of entertainment while you are on the move. In many cases, the cost of listening to online radio can exceed the cost of listening to traditional FM or AM radios.
There is no doubt that internet radio will continue to dominate the future of content delivery. As technology advances, it will become easier to deliver and listen to online radio stations. Simultaneously, more people will continue to use their mobile phones to get the latest news from online radios. It will also be common for musicians to launch their hit songs on online radio stations.