Sprint's NextRadio project was given a major push in New York City on Thursday evening as part of Advertising Week. NextRadio puts FM radio access on mobile phones, and was unveiled to advertisers with a panel moderated by The New York Times' Technology columnist David Pogue. Pogue interviewed Emmis Founder/CEO Jeff Smulyan, Columbia Records EVP/GM Joel Klaiman, RCA Records EVP/GM Joe Riccitelli and Sprint VP of Product David Owens about the project, which is a collaboration between Sprint, the radio industry and the major labels. The event was sponsored by New York Market Radio (NYMRAD).
Pogue asked the panel why smartphone owners need NextRadio, when they have access to so many streaming services already. According to AllVoices.com, this gave the panelists the opportunity to explain that since NextRadio uses an FM chip, it is free, uses up no data and drains less of your phone's battery. Users can also give feedback to stations via the NextRadio app, as well as purchase songs digitally.
Owens also touted the ubiquity of smartphone usage, and how mobile advertising is still a fairly new area. Every Android or Windows Sprint phone will now include NextRadio. Riccitelli also spoke about the power of radio when it comes to new music discovery, and said the NextRadio app is "continuous distribution" for radio content, reports Radio Ink.