Gone are the days of the handheld radio, but most smartphones have an FM chip that’s able to receive radio signals without using data. The problem is, most wireless carriers don’t activate the FM chip in their products. The NCRA is trying to change that with their Free Radio on My Phone campaign. Enabling FM reception on smartphones would guarantee free access to music and news without an internet connection or subscription to a streaming service. Listeners could have access to all kinds of local, national and international radio programming, supporting radio content creators. Broadcasters would be able to reach new ears through this accessible platform. In emergency situations where cell towers or internet are not available, the FM receiver is capable of putting you in touch with the outside world.
You can help make change happen by contacting your provider through Twitter, Facebook, or email. Among the providers who don’t enable their FM receivers are Shaw, Telus, Bell, and Rogers. The NCRA also has a petition going at change.org. Find out more about the campaign and see a full list of carriers not yet supporting FM reception at the Free Radio on My Phone website.