RadioplayerCanada App, 'NW News to Lake City

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RadioplayerCanada App, 'NW News to Lake City

Postby kal » Sat Apr 14, 2018 9:28 pm

This tweet just now from a CKNW news reader:

>>>
Back in the anchor chair @CKNW with this view one last time before we move to our new home @GlobalBC ! Be sure to tune the dial to AM980, listen online or using your Radioplayer Canada app.
<<<

has me wondering about this RadioplayerCanada app? Is anyone here using it? I hear lots of promos for it but I've yet to run across someone using it. For me radio is radio, as in analog radio, although I am a fan of satellite radio. However I'm not a fan of streamed radio, mainly because it is often many seconds, if not many minutes behind the actual radio feed, and because the commercials may be different.

Now as for that move to Lake City ... wonder if there is more attrition on the way? And will newscasts now end with "and outside our studio in Lake City the temperature is nn degrees Celsius."?
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Re: RadioplayerCanada App, 'NW News to Lake City

Postby Coolcat » Sun Apr 15, 2018 1:27 pm

I was in the UK a few weeks ago and saw some ads for it. I believe they are a UK company, what I dont like about Radioplayer Canada is that it only has Canadian stations which you can find on TuneIn or other apps which have stations all over the world. Not sure why anyone would actually use. IHeart Radio Canada isnt much better.
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Re: RadioplayerCanada App, 'NW News to Lake City

Postby Louis » Thu Apr 19, 2018 8:40 pm

The streaming app space has become very crowded. For traditional radio, there's TuneIn, iHeartRadio, Radio Player Canada, Radio Player UK, CBS Radio.com, and a several other apps backed by the traditional broadcasting conglomerates. Then there's the on-demand streaming apps like Spotify, Google Play Music, Apple Music, Tidal, Slacker, Amazon Music, and others.

These traditional media companies fail to understand that the way we consume music in the digital age has changed. Out of all the services listed above, most people I know choose Spotify to discover new music and share playlists with friends. Second place would go to Google Music because it's bundled with Android phones. A few Apple fanboys (and girls) choose Apple Music.

Out of all the streaming radio station apps, the only one that seems to have a noticeable mindshare is TuneIn and that's a very niche use case. Most people I know that use it are transplants or immigrants that occasionally stream stations from their hometowns. Nobody I know uses iHeart or Radio Player. We had a Sonos at the last three companies I worked at and everyone used it to stream Spotify playlists. I've noticed that my dentist office has replaced QMFM with a Spotify playlist. I've noticed that more restaurants have Spotify playing as well instead of Stingray or a local radio station. When I go to parties, people load up Spotify playlists from their phones. Why wait through 5 minutes of commercials and DJ babble to hear your favourite song when you can pay $10/month to hear it anytime you want?

The only reason why people still choose traditional radio is when streaming is either inaccessible or inconvenient. While all cars have AM/FM radios, only a few models have Android and Apple Car Play. My car is an older model without any of this "smart" technology so I bought a Roav Viva with Alexa built-in to try it out. This $30 device will play almost any radio station or playlist and it streams through my car stereo speakers. While I'm driving, I can say "Alexa, play CKNW" (or any station or song) and it plays. This is much more convenient than fidgeting with radio while driving, I have no reason to turn switch back to AM/FM at all anymore. It's only a matter of time until this voice activated technology becomes prevalent in all cars.

I tried the Radio Player Canada app and ended up deleting it after a day. All of the stations are available on TuneIn (along with millions of other stations) so it doesn't provide any unique value or service. Additionally, TuneIn aggregates station schedules, podcasts, and social media feeds from each station which can be useful. Radio Player Canada seems to be nothing more than a wrapper for a web directory with links to streams from the media companies backing it. The fact that the Bell Media stations are excluded from the app further diminishes it's value. This means that two popular music stations and a sports station in the Vancouver market are not available. I don't understand why the app exists. With all the marketing and billboards behind Radio Player, I doesn't seem to have hardly any mindshare. This failed experiment reminds me of a newspaper publisher trying to adapt to the "internet age" by posting a PDF of its daily newspaper online and expecting additional revenue.

For the record, the iHeartRadio app in Canada is almost identical to the one in the USA and includes the same stations from Bell, ClearChannel, Emmis, Entercom, Cumulus, etc. When Bell initially launched the app in Canada, it was simply a rebrand of the Bell Radio app with the iHeart name and branding applied. It originally included only Bell Media stations because Bell wanted to keep listeners in their "walled garden" and didn't want American stations competing with Bell in it's own app. I guess a business agreement happened between the two companies so that's no longer a concern.

The only other difference is that the American iHeart app offers a paid on-demand music and playlist service that competes with Spotify and Google Music. For whatever reason, this service isn't available in the Canadian iHeart app and isn't marketed much in the US probably because iHeart doesn't want it to cannibalize their traditional radio streams.
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Re: RadioplayerCanada App, 'NW News to Lake City

Postby Coolcat » Thu Apr 19, 2018 11:42 pm

Interesting how Alexa in Canada gets its stations from TuneIn and Alexa in the US gets its stations from TuneIn and Iheart. There are a fair amount of stations TuneIn doesnt carry that Iheart does. Also Alexa in the US has several skills that carry radio streams that are not available in Canada. Not sure about Google Home as they seem to use TuneIn.
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Re: RadioplayerCanada App, 'NW News to Lake City

Postby Louis » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:08 am

I can confirm that Alexa does indeed support iHeart for my Canadian account. I have the option in the Alexa app to choose either TuneIn or iHeart as the default source for radio stations. The only stations I’ve found that Alexa doesn’t support are CBS Radio stations. If I request WCBS or WBBM, Alexa tells me that it can’t find a station with that name even though these stations are listed on TuneIn. Maybe it’s a licensing restriction.
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