Coming in Loud and Clear

The first regularly programmed radio broadcast in Canada came to life on May 20,  1920 from the station XWA (Experimental Wireless Apparatus) in Montreal. From that point on Canada's love of radio began, with now an estimated 4.3 million listeners a week tuning into just CBC Radio One alone. In your car, at home in the kitchen and outside on the deck it is more than likely that you will have the radio going. The sound of the radio, whether just in the background or concise listening, is something that we have all grown up with.
 
One of the ever growing trends for radio and its listeners today is the advent of internet radio. While writing this article I typed in "online radio stations" into a search engine and it came up with 228,000,000 relevant finds. I am sure some of those pages had something to do with cats in funny costumes but you can see that it is not a small trend. It is almost always a choice that any station that you tune in on your car or home stereo can also be found streaming over the internet. 
 
It is stated that from 2001 to 2011 the percentage of those listening to online radio has nearly doubled and is expected to increase even more dramatically by 2015. That increase is going to be helped by the now multiple ways you can stream your favourite radio stations. No longer is it tied down to only  listening from your computer which is rather limited on its sound quality and portability. From the diminutive Scansonic R4 Internet/FM Tabletop Radio or the Sonos Play3 to built in tuners in a receiver like the Pioneer's SC-67 you can now access not only to your local stations but also tens of thousands of stations worldwide. You can even stream over your smart phones and tablets if you like. 
 
tunein apps and website allow you to access thousands of free internet radio stationsOpening up your listening world is just a click away. You can catch the latest music trends in Japan while you make breakfast and find out the news from England while getting ready for bed. Unlike traditional radio you are never out of range of the signal. As long as you have internet connection the clear sound of the world is available to you. No more static or drop outs during your favourite song. No more playing with rabbit ears hoping to get the best signal while standing on one foot holding them above your head at a 45.6 degree angle off axis from your fichus. If you visit sites like tunein you can browse through their stated 70,000+ radio stations, all of them not affected by your fichus. 
 
Some of the stations you find online are only available online and are not broadcast in the traditional way but the majority are your live over the air broadcasts you grew up with. One of the major advantages of sites like tunein is the searchability of it. Say you are in the mood for a certain genre like Reggaeton or bluegrass, they are broken down into categories that you can go through. You can even micro-search to a certain song that you really want to hear and it is more than likely that one of the thousands stations is playing that song right at that moment. Almost gone is the hoping and waiting that your favourite song is going to come on soon. 
 
The Scansonic table radio lets you tune in internet radio as easily as a local FM stationA great aspect of internet radio is the ability of expanding your musical tastes. At London Audio we are always looking for great music and sometimes browsing different stations on the internet we can come across a gem we would never have heard if it wasn't for the online accessibility. Free to listen to you can surf through the online airwaves in search of the next favourite song of the household. Will internet radio replace your traditional radio? It could sooner than you think and that will be a step in the right direction for some of us. But for those who love your rabbit ears do not fear, you will still get to strike a pose with your fichus for years to come.

 

Nearly every modern AV receiver now contains internet radio tuners.