Thursday, 11 June 2015

#Blog Alert Will Apple cause radio to crumble?


I have to admit I have not listened to a lot of Zane Lowe he's not really my thing,  but he struck me as being an OK person, in that down to earth kind of Kiwi way.  I liked the way he played with sound and knows how to do radio, has a very compelling relaxed way of interviewing - but I hated most of the music he played.  So I tuned away.

But I am not the listener that Apple's Beats 1 is pursuing.  And Beats 1 is going to have to be about the listener . 

I do believe if they get that relationship right, pick the right personalities and music it will be deadly and it will travel across the time zones of the world.

When I worked with US Talk show host  Doug Urbanski, I realised that his listener was drawn to the things he said and the different time zones and day parts he popped up in either live or recorded, across the U.S. were irrelevant.

So how will Beats 1 impact on traditional radio?  To begin with I don't think it will.  It's just another streaming radio station. I read a statistic recently that only 7% of Americans have ever streamed a radio or podcast in their cars.  So traditional radio has time to keep up with new kids on the block from Cupertino.  And doesn't cupertino sound like a camp Italian drink that Costa might sell ... or is that just me?

I am waiting for Apple to put Podcast App Swell back online.  It was bought by Apple last year for 30 million dollars.  Swell was a podcast player with a difference it had a clever algorithm that worked out what you liked and played you more of the same.  I loved that and it worked - and it kept me listening and I guess it could also learn the kind of things I might want to buy and target the commercials directly at me.

So if Swell makes a return with Apple at the helm, then traditional radio should start to get worried a little sooner. 

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