Rockers Want iPods with FM Tuners

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In this age of Internet radio stations, podcasts, personal satellite radio receivers, services streaming music to mobile phones, and, well, iPods, it might seem a little antiquated to ask listeners to rock-formatted FM radio what they want in a portable music player. But that’s just what Jacobs Media did, conducting a Web-based poll which drew more than 25,000 respondents listening to 69 FM-formatted radio stations. The (unsurprising) results? Rock radio listeners want FM tuners in their iPods.

The Web poll represent’s the company’s third annual survey of rock radio listeners, and primarily targets rock radio listeners who are members of stations’ email clubs. Participation FM stations offer mainstream/active rock, alternative, AAA (Adult Album Alternative), and Classic rock formats. This year, the poll drew 25,000 respondents from 69 stations.

This year’s survey found that ownership of digital music players has reach 47 percent of the total respondents, up from just 34 percent when the first poll ran in February 2005. Alternative format listeners are most likely to tout a PMP, with some 67 percent reporting owning an iPod or similar device. Among those who don’t currently own a digital music player, 45 percent said they were somewhat or very likely to buy into the market in 2007; 12 percent reported a strong likelihood of buying a player in 2007.

But what do rock radio listeners want in their personal music players? An FM tuner. Some 33 percent of respondents cited an FM tuner as the most important ew feature they want in their “next” personal media player, with the option outscoring options such as larger storage capacity, video playback, and larger screens. Among current iPod owners, some 43 percent indicated an FM tuner was their choice for a new feature.

We didn’t take part in the survey, so we can’t say whether other choices for new music player features included “ballsier riffs,” “rockin’ tunes,” or “more volume, dude!”…but we’ll be sure to make a note when we start to see more iPods than Bic lighters held aloft at gigs to bring on an encore.

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