FM Chips in Mobile Phones

Jul 9, 2014

WQCS’s audiences and local communities know that we provide up-to-the minute public safety and weather information through Emergency Alert System, local Emergency Operations Centers and new Florida Public Radio Emergency Network. And they rely on us for unbiased news and engaging cultural programming anytime. In order to accomplish our mission of public service, we must make sure we are available to our audiences anytime, anywhere, and on their favorite mobile devices.

Increasingly, the device that our audiences use for connecting to the world is their mobile phone.  For that reason, public radio organizations are working with our friends in commercial radio and religious broadcasting to urge the major cell phone service providers to activate the FM chip that is already in all the mobile phones they sell. 

To date, only Sprint is on board, while the other major carriers – AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile – have refused, even though it would cost them nothing!  We believe that for the sake of public safety and universal access to information during emergencies, it is imperative for the major cell phone carriers and manufacturers to activate FM chips in the smart phones they sell.  This will ensure that radio – including public radio – is available to everyone with a smart phone whenever streaming signals is not an option.

Activating the FM chips in smart phones will increase basic access to all radio service, and will help to expand our free services to more Americans.  You can help make this happen.  We are asking every listener to help us make activated FM chips a reality.

Tell your carrier to activate the FM chip in their mobile phones. Carriers can specify activated FM chips in their orders with manufacturers, but they need to know there is market demand for this capability. More information is available at