In our last blog post we covered some of the most popular questions about internet radio. Here we continue with the second part and if you have more questions please use the comments section. We will try to answer all your questions in these 2 posts.
8. What is a good audio streaming host for an internet radio startup?
Maybe the real question here is: what is a good audio streaming host for MY station? There are a lot of streaming hosts on the market, each with their own set of strengths and weaknesses. You really need to understand your needs before you start a quest for selecting the best host(s) for you.
Here is a shortlist of what you need to consider:
- How many concurrent listeners do I expect to have at peaks?
- How many total listener hours (TLH) a month?
- How important is the host network’s stability, ie. do I need to be up 99.99% of the time?
- Will there be more station staff? DJs, contributors, editors…
- What do I need in terms of features: auto DJ, rotations, widgets, social media integrations, live broadcasting…?
- How easy/difficult is programming? If you are planning on having rich schedules, for example, powerful automation could be very important to you.
- Do I need to build my own website once I have the station? Some hosts offer a radio page – so unless you have special needs, that could be enough for you.
Once you have narrowed down the list of hosting candidates, check the pricing, register a trial and give it a try. Most hosts offer a 7 day free trial.
9. Can I broadcast live?
You can broadcast live from the comfort of your home, or your studio. For a simple, budget friendly setup you will just need a laptop, a microphone, and a broadcasting platform like Airtime Pro. After setting up your internet station on Airtime Pro you will need to connect a streaming audio encoder like Rocket Broadcaster. Airtime Pro’s built-in Rocket Broadcaster live broadcasting functionality will help you set it up in just one click.
10. Can I broadcast live on the go?
Sure, that’s also an option. To do so, you will need a live broadcast app on your phone and internet broadcasting software such as Airtime Pro. Anyone with log-in credentials, a mobile phone and a live streaming app like Cool Mic (there are also other apps that you can use on both Android and IOS devices) will be able to live broadcast to your station. Connecting the live broadcasting app to Airtime Pro is fairly simple.Check out this guide on live broadcasting from the streets using Airtime Pro and Cool Mic.
11. How can I listen to internet radio in my car?
The easiest way to listen to internet radio in your car would be to connect your phone directly to your car audio system either via Bluetooth, with a USB cable or a headphone jack to the line-in input connection. You can install an Internet radio app like TuneIn on your phone so that you find plenty of stations in one place. If you have a favorite station in mind that you always tend to listen to, it will most probably have a site with an embedded player, so you don’t even need to install a radio app to listen to it. If your car audio system is quite new there is a good chance that it will mute the music when you receive a call and allow you to answer the caller hands-free.
The tricky part is your mobile data that you will need to spend while listening so just make sure you have a good data plan that includes unlimited data or at least lots of gigabytes so that you don’t end up paying a fortune on your next monthly bill.
If your car system is an old one that takes cassettes (antique one one could say…) you could use a cassette tape adaptor.
12. Are there any free online radio broadcasting courses?
Sure you can find several free online radio broadcasting courses on the internet. Below we found 3 useful resources for you. If you have more ideas please share them with the community in the comments.
- Coursera: Streaming and internet radio
- The Tait Radio Academy: Courses for critical communications
- Study.com: Online radio broadcasting
13. Do I need to have a website to start an internet radio station?
You don’t need one but it would be a plus if you did. Nowadays many internet broadcasting software platforms like Airtime Pro will provide a radio page and unique URL that you can share with your listeners. That page will include the media player and social media links to your social channels. Moreover, your listeners will be able to find your station directly on internet radio directories such as TuneIn, Streema, or iTunes Internet Radio.
14. Do I need to broadcast 24/7?
It’s ideal if your station broadcasts 24/7 so that the listeners will always be able to tune in and listen to your station. But fret not. Most internet broadcasting software will offer you the option to schedule playlists throughout the week. That’s an easy way to plan ahead and have peace of mind that your station will . It’s good to have a schedule with the live shows so that your listeners know when to tune in to listen to a radio show.