Why mobile phones have no AM Radio?
About a year ago, I asked the guys at Nokia Singapore why they don’t have AM radio tuners to pair with the millions of FM tuner capable phones they develop. I thought the answer was in the north of physics, something that had to do with frequency modulation and amplitude modulation. I guessed wrong.
The truth is, it’s largely got to do with market demand. Who would want to use AM radio on their phones? I told them, AM radio is still hot and raging in the Philippines especially with regular folks that listen to news.
The other day, one of those blind masseurs in the malls told me he’s been waiting this one great feature a mobile phone should have — an AM radio. I agreed and told him about my earlier discussion with the people from Nokia.
I myself very rarely use the FM tuner on my phone. I already have an iPod and a Zune to get my dose of music. More often than not, I tune in to one of the AM radio stations that rebroadcasts TV Patrol or GMA News in my car at around 6:30PM. I think this might also be true to other people as well.
Actually, there are some phones that both have AM radio (e.g. Sony Ericsson R300i, R306i) but if they could put FM tuners on half of the phones sold each year, why not just add AM tuner to it?
Why don’t we ask readers if they’d prefer AM radio or FM radio on their mobile phones?