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Tech by VICE

Rdio Seeks Salvation in Radio

If you can't beat 'em.

by Nicholas Deleon
Aug 12 2015, 1:37pm

Photo: Brian Roberts/Flickr

Rdio's secret weapon in its battle against the likes of Spotify and Apple Music? Old school radio.

The San Francisco-based company is rolling out a new feature that integrates 500 traditional AM/FM radio stations to its service. The stations, owned by Atlanta-based radio giant Cumulus Media, include music stations, sports stations, and talk radio stations. Cumulus bought a "significant" stake in Rdio in 2013.

"If you've read the tech press over the last few months, you'd think the tech business invented radio," Rdio CEO Anthony Bain told the Los Angeles Times. "Radio is still the most widely used form of audio. There's a big audience out there."

Hard as it might be to believe to a generation reared on MP3s and the iPod, but the latest stats from Nielsen suggest that more than 90 percent of US adults listen to the radio at least once per week.

Rdio's hope, of course, is that it's able to stand out from the rest of the pack by making these radio stations just a few taps away.