The radio world is highly fragmented; there are very few real radio brands. Broadcasting technology is fragmented as well - FM/AM, Internet, mobile phones, DAB/DAB+, DTV... "The world is getting multi-platform", Cridland says, "and radio is going multi-platform as well." Still 2/3 of the radio consumtion is by FM/AM, yet there is DAB (BBC radio 6 music), or even TV (BBC radio 1xtra).
The most important radio platform, Cridland says, is the internet. Yet, every station has got its own player and distribution technology - the only exception being the UK radio player replacing all the different players the stations had built before. (Its usage is exactly the same as it always was: When people are getting up they tune in, either on AM/FM or on the web, and they keep using the radio player the whole day long, until late at night.)
The second most important platform is the mobile, especially the iPhone, a device that has done so much better than any other mobile device. Accordingly the question should be: How can we do the same with radio? By means of crowdsourcing and user-generated content. An remarkable tool for getting the audiences' voice on air is AudioBoo.fm, a mobile app that lets people record and hand in their recordings with a single tap. The industrial revolution called internet can also change the process of radio making. Instead of of costly radio studios you just need a free software like Audacity or an iPhone/iPad/Android app to create high quality audio pieces.
Publishing programmes on the web, Cridland says, will let much more people listen to them than just by broadcasting. Cridland's conclusions:
- The future of radio is multiplatform.
- Radio needs to concentrate on the user interface and discovery.
- Media is changing from consumption to creation.
- Recognise the power of the brand.