Radio In The Home

Radio is having trouble competing with TV in the one daypart radio has historically dominated. That’s good for TV, because AM drive is the one daypart that’s going to be difficult for the interactivity of computers to reach, and which has shown growth substantial viewing growth in the last two decades.

I start most weekdays late. Saturdays start even later.

In the shower six’ish, I turned on the radio. Garrison Keillor was just starting A Prairie Home Companion on Public Radio.

Helaine walked in to use the sink and wash her face. She couldn’t help but hear the radio blasting away. He’s not her favorite.

OK – that’s too kind.

She dislikes the show. There, I said it.

As I listened to some guy from Louisiana that Garrison was praising as if he was the second coming, I started to think about radio. These are tough times for radio.

It’s not just the competition from satellite services and iPods, it’s also TV. Does anyone listen to the radio at home except me?

I asked my friend Bob last week. He said he thinks the vast majority of his morning show’s audience (Bob & Sheri, heard across the US) is out of the home. Some are in cars, others at work. There are downloaders listening to podcasts, but that’s still a small minority.

Radio is having trouble competing with TV in the one daypart radio has historically dominated. That’s good for TV, because AM drive is the one daypart that’s going to be difficult for the interactivity of computers to compete in and which has shown substantial viewing growth in the last two decades.

My only in-house radio listening takes place in the shower. I have a Sony radio (using 3 c-cell batteries that last well over a year between replacements), mounted on a bracket on the shower’s side wall.

We have a clock radio next to the bed. It’s hardly used. When I turned on the family room receiver during last week’s poker game, it was the first time it had been on in months… maybe years. That radio is at least thirty years old. When it dies, it won’t be replaced.

It’s very difficult for sound to compete with sound and pictures. That’s probably a good thing for me.

4 thoughts on “Radio In The Home”

  1. I only use my radios these days so that I can listen to my XM or iPod. That’ll probably change, though, in a few weeks as it’s time for baseball!!

    Other than the occasional need for traffic or weather updates, I hardly listen to actual over-the-air radio these days, since I have an XM.

  2. I listen to the radio at home, though admittedly not as much as I used to. I listen to WPKN the most, followed by NPR.

    (And I like Prairie Home Companion too … 🙂

  3. Geoff,

    I often have WFAN on in the house (much to my wife’s chagrin), but mostly as background noise when I’m doing something else.

    Plus, (much to my assistant’s chagrin) I let WFAN stream over my computer at work.

    Needless to say, I like my sports.

  4. My wife and I still listen to radio — but as 50-somethings we find only a limited amount of music radio that appeals to us over the air. Pete Fornatale’s WFUV shows (streamed online) are becoming a “must hear.”

    You know what helped replace a lot of morning radio listening? NewsChannel 8. As parents of a high school student, your upgraded graphics and continuous scroll of school closings — even during commercials — makes 8 the first place we go when it snows. As fellow former morning DJs we recall the days when “we” closed the schools. Now it’s local TV morning news anchors (actually the person who programs your graphics). Plus, my better half now works in New Haven and likes checking the traffic reports in the 7am hour on 9 (24 on our cable system).

    Gary, thanks for your kind words about the FAN. They on the kitchen radio and the one in the bathroom. (Geoff, do only radio pros put radios in their “loo?”)

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