2018: Zero Hour for Radio in the Car?

I found this infographic at Dashburst.com that details the projected roadmap for technology in cars. Here’s the final bit.  Click on the image for the source of this prediction.

But this roadmap is still pretty ziggy-and-zaggy.  The Detroit Three are all taking different routes instead of coming together on a common interface and programming language.  That could delay things.

Still, radio needs to be prepared for what’s coming next.  AM and FM are eventually going to be superseded by IP delivery of some sort through some means. Is the industry doing enough today when it’s still making buckets of money to prepare for tomorrow?  I have this horrible, horrible feeling it is not.

I’m going for a drive to think about all this.  Time for a driving tunes playlist that I won’t be getting from my radio.

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

One thought on “2018: Zero Hour for Radio in the Car?

  • July 3, 2013 at 4:16 am

    I think radio is extremely important. Especially as an analog format.
    In a natural disaster with very little technology radio can be transmitted and received. For being one of the oldest mass media formats I feel it's lost it's way. The greed of the media industry has very well choked out the variety that used to exist. Now most radio stations in North America are owned and operated by a very few huge conglomerates pedaling what ever sells the quickest until it burns out.

    There has always been a divide between art and commerce and when done right can be beneficial for everyone. Radio has abused the listener greatly in the past decade or so.
    In order for a healthy relationship to exist you need to provide the listener with what they want, and what they don't know they want yet. This allows for advertisers to sell their products to the fan base of a station. It now seems more present than ever the same high rotation songs are getting played more and more while variety is dwindling.

    When there is variety radio can play curator and weed through music that might not be ready yet for mass market, but can help keep the music business healthy. More music is being made than ever but there is less curation of stuff that needs to be heard now, and the music that needs some more time to nurture itself and incubate before hitting the masses. This has been the premises for every musical revolution since, white guys put jazz on the radio helping black artists indirectly get noticed, Elvis' hips and Bill Haley made way for the Beatles etc.

    There is still a great feeling to hear a song that changes your life when you hear it on the radio. Only that happens less and less, all variety has moved to satellite radio. It's great that stations are global now, but we've lost local tastemakers, amazing personalities, and altogether a fan base that praises radio. The Spirit of Radio seems a distant memory only revisited on classic rock stations one day a week.

    I listen mostly to the CBC now because it seems more cutting edge and current in what is relevant. I don't always like what I hear but I'm more willing to listen because I haven't heard it yet.

    John Peel is dead so is Wolfman Jack where are the new era of Innovative DJ's on the FM / AM airwaves.

    I will hold my breath for indie 99.


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