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Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 9:01 am
by Lucky615
Just curious if you have a cellphone that has the FM chip. I have two that includes FM radio. The Nokia 3310 and the Alcatel Flip phone. Do you use the FM feature on your phone or just skip that feature all together, just wondering. I personally use the FM radio on both quite a bit. Some cellphones have the FM chip but you have to install the NextRadio app in order to get the chip activated. If you’re interested check out the FM chip info on YouTube.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 9:56 am
by km1125
My newer phone has it. I didn't realize it when I bought it but found out later. Thought it was interesting and tried it out but don't really have the opportunity to use it. I do listen to FM in the car all the time and sometimes at the house but don't really need it anywhere else.

Now... not sure about the chip but if it's an SDR and someone hacks it to do aviation or marine band.....

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 10:32 am
by Lucky615
That’s an interesting question. Now on my Alcatel Flip I have internet and there’s an App Store called KaiOS Store they offer hundreds of apps. They have a World Radio app that offers over 100 internet radio stations. This App Store is only on KaiOS phones mostly through pre-paid burner type phones like Tracfone and the cheap Wal-Mart and Target phones that they offer. These are all considered dumb phones apparently Google is involved at a minimum on these devices.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 11:23 am
by craig11152
I've had Moto G4 , G6 and G7 . They all have FM chips.
In fact the only 2 radios we have in the house are in a Moto g6 and g7. :oops:

The reception is OK for Ann Arbor stations but a bit hit or miss inside for Detroit stations.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 1:55 pm
by Lucky615
craig11152 wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 11:23 am
I've had Moto G4 , G6 and G7 . They all have FM chips.
In fact the only 2 radios we have in the house are in a Moto g6 and g7. :oops:

The reception is OK for Ann Arbor stations but a bit hit or miss inside for Detroit stations.
The headphone wire is not the best antenna system.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 4:10 pm
by craig11152
Lucky615 wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 1:55 pm
craig11152 wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 11:23 am
I've had Moto G4 , G6 and G7 . They all have FM chips.
In fact the only 2 radios we have in the house are in a Moto g6 and g7. :oops:

The reception is OK for Ann Arbor stations but a bit hit or miss inside for Detroit stations.
The headphone wire is not the best antenna system.
Is there an alternative to plug in to the headphone jack? Or is it just the nature of the beast as it were.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Jul 24, 2020 4:27 pm
by Lucky615
craig11152 wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 4:10 pm
Lucky615 wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 1:55 pm
craig11152 wrote:
Fri Jul 24, 2020 11:23 am
I've had Moto G4 , G6 and G7 . They all have FM chips.
In fact the only 2 radios we have in the house are in a Moto g6 and g7. :oops:

The reception is OK for Ann Arbor stations but a bit hit or miss inside for Detroit stations.
The headphone wire is not the best antenna system.
Is there an alternative to plug in to the headphone jack? Or is it just the nature of the beast as it were.
It’s just the nature of the beast just turn the loudspeaker on with the earphones still plugged in. The speaker in my phone works pretty decent.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 3:06 pm
by Calvert DeForest
My LG Rebel 4 has the FM chip activated with a stock tuner app. It's a little clunky to navigate (no direct frequency input....you have to "turn the dial"), but it gets the job done. I also use the NextRadio app from Google Play as I've used it on prevous phones. It allows for direct frequency entry, although it can't seem to download local station data (location access is enabled, so that's a mystery). Still easier to navigate than the stock tuner.

The headphone-wire antenna setup has always been a limitation on FM-enabled phones. Don't know if there's any real alternative other than a longer wire. My guess is that an internal FM antenna isn't feasible given the hardware limitations of the phone. I did have a Sony AM/FM Walkman with a digital tuner once. Both AM and FM antennas were internal, and it provided excellent FM reception. The primary purpose of FM chips in phones is to an alternative to receive information in emergency situations where internet/data access may not be available. A lot of cell carriers used to require their manufacturers to block the FM chip in phones on their networks. They much preferred customers to stream so they could sell the data. I've noticed more carriers have allowed the FM chips to be unblocked in recent years.

All cell phones have FM chips, as they are required by federal law. The issue is that there is no federal statute requiring the chips to be activated. Some states such as Indiana have passed laws requiring unblocked chips on phones sold in their states as a matter of emergency communication. Other states it's up to the discretion of the carrier.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 4:09 pm
by SolarMax
Calvert DeForest wrote:
Mon Aug 03, 2020 3:06 pm

All cell phones have FM chips, as they are required by federal law.
I have not found a federal statute or FCC reg that requires FM chips in cell phones.
Many phones do have an FM chip on board, but as mentioned, cell carriers thwart its activation or use.
Not all phones have FM chips. Apple has not had a physical FM chip implanted in its iPhones since the iPhone 6.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 5:53 pm
by Lucky615
Calvert DeForest wrote:
Mon Aug 03, 2020 3:06 pm
My LG Rebel 4 has the FM chip activated with a stock tuner app. It's a little clunky to navigate (no direct frequency input....you have to "turn the dial"), but it gets the job done. I also use the NextRadio app from Google Play as I've used it on prevous phones. It allows for direct frequency entry, although it can't seem to download local station data (location access is enabled, so that's a mystery). Still easier to navigate than the stock tuner.

The headphone-wire antenna setup has always been a limitation on FM-enabled phones. Don't know if there's any real alternative other than a longer wire. My guess is that an internal FM antenna isn't feasible given the hardware limitations of the phone. I did have a Sony AM/FM Walkman with a digital tuner once. Both AM and FM antennas were internal, and it provided excellent FM reception. The primary purpose of FM chips in phones is to an alternative to receive information in emergency situations where internet/data access may not be available. A lot of cell carriers used to require their manufacturers to block the FM chip in phones on their networks. They much preferred customers to stream so they could sell the data. I've noticed more carriers have allowed the FM chips to be unblocked in recent years.

All cell phones have FM chips, as they are required by federal law. The issue is that there is no federal statute requiring the chips to be activated. Some states such as Indiana have passed laws requiring unblocked chips on phones sold in their states as a matter of emergency communication. Other states it's up to the discretion of the carrier.
You mentioned the NextRadio app and I think they’re now very limited and don’t provide any local station data. Actually I think NextRadio is no longer in business.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Tue Aug 04, 2020 9:28 am
by audiophile
The FM chip is nice in airplane or the top deck on cruise ship (think height). I decoded successfully RDS in the ocean 90 miles from shore.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Tue Aug 04, 2020 11:41 am
by RayQix
I don’t think FM is a requirement.... my iPhone doesn’t seem to have one.

If I want the FM I have a radio..... or five ;-)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Thu Aug 06, 2020 10:20 pm
by Turkeytop
So, do these phones actually receive the FM signal over the air? Or is data through the cellular network?

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Aug 07, 2020 7:37 am
by Lucky615
Turkeytop wrote:
Thu Aug 06, 2020 10:20 pm
So, do these phones actually receive the FM signal over the air? Or is data through the cellular network?
Over the air, no data ever. There’s an FM tuner in the phone through an app, on some cheaper phones the app is already factory installed and permanent. The FM is designed to work without data for emergency situations therefore no data required. It’s actually nice to have free FM on a cellphone.

Re: Cellphones with FM Chip

Posted: Fri Aug 07, 2020 9:20 am
by km1125
If you think back to the fall of 2003, having this feature could be very useful. There were still a few FM stations on the air, but getting cell service was nearly impossible.