The people who were born after the year 2000 -are now grown adults. Anyone older than this remembers the explosive progress of technology since the 1990’s, and has a long list of things that used to be the peak of progress and are now completely obsolete. Among them an invention that is centuries old: the radio. FM Radio has been people's best companions on road trips as well as at home, with frequencies working like channels to bring music, sports commentary and shows like audible TV programs.
While FM radio is not ready to die just yet, it is facing an ever-growing ferocious competitor known as internet radio. Functioning exactly like any other kind of streaming platform, Internet radio broadcasts shows, music and podcasts from any device that has an internet connection. It is by definition more practical and accessible than the average FM radio station, (which requires radio companies to buy local frequencies from government offices frequently and in enough numbers that they can spread across the country), whereas Internet radio isn't limited by money, borders or wavelengths. It is not only international, but instant and accessible at any hour of the day. It is also infinitely easier to use and you don’t need radio equipment to pick up a signal. The removal of any location-based radio sites are of course the Internet radio's main feature. Local FM radio stations will never have the resources to be on demand across the world, which has made Internet radio popular among expats and other travelers who now have the option to listen to what they want, whenever they want and however they want. And they do! According to American statistics from 2007, internet radio already had more listeners than satellite radio. These numbers check out across the world, making internet radio's supremacy an evidence.
This number of Internet radio listeners is ever growing with time, and not only because of material reasons. One of the beauty of internet radio is the enormous amount of diversity available. Internet radio is not only more accessible to listeners but also to creators: a lot of people have turned to the Internet to broadcast podcasts, niche shows, a certain type of music of talk forums, etc. FM stations require money and organization and often demand hundreds of dollars per second for commercial airplay, which was previously impossible for anyone to start a local program and broadcast it by themselves. This leaves more choice for listeners, who can today- find almost anything they want to listen to, because anyone is able to respond to the demand and create a niche for themselves.
Of course, Internet radio isn't a magical solution. Ironically, it's sometimes less reliable than FM Radio. A number of things can limit the listener: no battery, no network, running out of data, being lost in the tremendous amount of choices online. FM stations are so reliable in that respect that they're still used on airplanes as a source of entertainment for passengers to listen to during a flight. Is it worth the spontaneous or unreliable schedules of Internet radio stations, or is Internet radio going to eventually win the battle over FM radio totally? As technology gets better, improvements are constantly made with the goal of burying FM radio a bit more every year and helps internet radio stay on top of the listening battle. These days, internet radio's biggest competitor is probably streaming platforms like Spotify which offer a freedom that neither FM stations or internet radio usually offer. Then again, Spotify is the internets’ answer to a paid programing stream which gains a fee from both listeners and advertisers. Other sites such as iHeartRadio is a commercial operation run like FM radio and is still corporate owned and run.