The National Association for Broadcasters and National Public Radio have submitted a call to the FCC to activate FM chips in smartphones. The recommendation was in response to the FCC’s proceedings aimed at improving wireless emergency alerts.
“When activated, this built-in feature provides Americans with convenient access to the comprehensive, ongoing news and information that local radio stations provide before, during and after an emergency, that consumers would welcome in the remaining universe of smartphones,” the groups wrote in their filing. The pair also pointed to the options for accessing non-English stations and the lack of concerns about losing connectivity as reasons why radio would be superior to wireless or broadband networks in emergency situations.
FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel spoke out in favor of FM chip activation last last year, but there have not been any federal moves yet to require that action. Several U.S.-based organizations have participated in campaigns to make wireless carriers activate the chips, but the topic is also a global one. The BBC has also launched efforts related to FM chip activation.