5/2/13: RAIN Summit Europe panel will address Net radio for a multiplatform world

Paul Maloney
May 2, 2013 - 12:35pm

There was a time when Internet radio was essentially connecting with listeners as they sat at a desktop computer. Today's landscape is significantly different: while the "9-to-5, at-work" audience is still there, online audio consumption has exploded on mobile devices (phones and tablets), home entertainment systems (including standalone devices and apps built into Blu-ray players and home theater receivers), and now in-dash automobile systems.

At RAIN Summit Europe (at the Hotel BLOOM! in Brussels May 23), leading radio professionals will discuss how their companies utilize various technologies to reach their audience, and the challenges created for advertisers.

If you attended RAIN Summit West in Las Vegas last month, you'll remember Ali Abhary, CEO of Spectrum Medya, of Turkey. He'll join us once again, as a panelist in the "Multiplatform Content Distribution" discussion. Spectrum is one of Turkey's leading radio broadcasters, and owns the nationwide FM radio network Metro FM.

Radio 538 is a Dutch commercial broadcaster (with online hip-hop and contemporary R&B station Juize.FM, and sister stations Radio 10 Gold and SLAM!FM). Jan Willem Bruggenwirth (pictured left), 538Group managing director, joins the panel, along with RAIN Summit Europe veteran Caroline Grazé, Radio NRJ head of Internet & new business international, based in Hamburg. NRJ is the "Hit Music Only!" multimedia group with a brand extending across Europe, and even North America and Japan.

Joël Ronez, Radio France director of new media and Radioline founder/CEO Thomas Serval will represent France on the panel. Ronez's company is a public service broadcaster with seven national networks. Radioline is Europe's largest aggregator of online radio streams.

U.S.-based Jay Supovitz, Triton Digital SVP/GM of international markets, will handle moderating "Multiplatform Content Distribution."

Later in the day, RAIN publisher and AccuRadio.com founder/CEO Kurt Hanson (at right at this year's European Radiodays conference) will make his "State of the Industry" address -- updated and focused for the European Internet radio industry (audio of his RAIN Summit West speech is available via the link in the right-hand margin of RAIN).

The RAIN Summit Europe page is here. It has the day's full agenda, descriptions of the panels and presentations, and links to register for the event (still just €99.00 including lunch and cocktail party).

Paul Maloney
May 2, 2013 - 12:35pm

Webcaster (and recent Webby winner, see RAIN here) Songza has revealed some impressive usage stats.

Songza says its service -- with the Concierge feature that offes playlists based on time of day and likely listener activities -- now reaches 4.7 million monthly "active users," generating nearly 1.1 million hours of listening each day. They've streamed more than 560 million songs in the last 30 days.

The webcaster has also released a pretty significant update of its mobile app for Apple devices. Its 3.0 version for iOS includes six significant improvements. One is "HQ Audio," powered by technology from Audyssey Laboratories, designed to improve headphone sound quality without requiring higher bitrates (and increased data usage). Other new features include faster ways to find favorite artists, discover new playlists, and -- by shaking the mobile device -- find a playlist to suit your current activity.

Songza says its apps have been installed six million times.

Last month RAIN reported (here) that Songza completed a $3.8 million fund-raising round.

Read more on today's news in Hypebot here.

Paul Maloney
May 2, 2013 - 12:35pm

Emarketer points to two recent studies in reporting that "in the U.S., 67% of mobile Internet users... said they mostly or only used mobile, as opposed to the desktop, to go online and surf the web." Those surveys were conducted by Decision Fuel and On Device Research in November of last year.

Another study eMarketer cites is by the Media Behavior Institute. Among its U.S. study subjects, "the percentage on desktop slipped by 5 points between the six-month period ending in July 2012 and the six-month period ending in January 2013." An average of more than 43% of participants went online via a mobile phone each week in January 2013, which is 8 points more than the period that ended the previous July.

Tablets' average weekly reach grew by 4 percentage points, and were used by 17% of subjects by the study's end.

Read more in eMarketer here.