In a bid to bridge the digital divide and provide radio services to those residing in rural and remote areas, the Indian government has mandated the inclusion of FM Radio on all smartphones. This move ensures that every citizen has access to these services, especially in difficult times.
The Minister of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has made it clear that smartphone manufacturers must not disable the FM Radio feature, especially if it comes pre-installed. And if it doesn't, then it must be included. Interestingly, while most smartphone chipsets support FM Radio, Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) tend to disable the feature. For instance, Apple, the Cupertino-based tech giant, does not provide FM Radio on its iPhones.
To ensure compliance, the Indian Cellular and Electronics Association (ICEA) and Manufacturers' Association for Information Technology (MAID) have received an advisory from the government, requesting that they make FM Radio easily accessible on smartphones. This directive is expected to make FM Radio more accessible and widespread, creating new opportunities for listeners and broadcasters alike.