A Bright Future for Radios: As Long As Cars Are Around, Radios Will Remain Relevant

A Bright Future for Radios: As Long As Cars Are Around, Radios Will Remain Relevant

Clara Albacete '19, Arts and Entertainment Editor

One afternoon, while plugging my phone into the auxiliary jack in the car, I wondered to myself: how long will it be before radios become irrelevant? I sent a survey to the student body of OC and was surprised by the results. Here are a few of the statistics out of 184 responses:

  • 63% of girls use the radio every day
  • 87% use the radio mainly for music; however, 90% prefer to use their phones to listen to music
  • When taking podcasts into consideration, 77% prefer the good ol’ radio to podcasts
  • Only 38% of girls tend to listen to podcasts at all


The radio stations listened to most frequently are 96.1 Kiss and Star 100.7, which are the two main stations that play popular music. For those that do listen to podcasts, the most popular ones seem to be informational (about history and science), mystery, and comedy.

What I found most interesting was in the final comments, where most girls pointed out that they listened to the radio in the car. It’s true—unless you are the passenger that can control the music coming from your phone, it tends to be simpler to just put on the radio and listen to whatever is on. The radio also becomes increasingly popular around Christmastime, since Wish 99.7 and 94.5 WESA  play a nice variety of Christmas tunes.

Something that has been increasing in popularity is online radios such as Apple Music, Pandora, Spotify, etc. They tend to have a wider range in music and fewer ads, along with the benefit of personalizing playlists to one’s preferences. The only con to these radios is that they lack news outlets, which still remain relevant in spreading information, although today’s youth don’t listen to news stations very frequently. Some of the most listened-to news outlets are NPR and KDKA.

It seems that as long are cars are around, radios will be, too. Radios are convenient to use in the car and stations can be changed at the quick press of a button. The only outlet that seems to have a bleaker future is podcasts, as they are not easily accessible in the car, and require one to actually decide to sit down and listen to the podcast. By contrast, the radio just fills the empty space in car rides. Additionally, there will always be a need for music when a phone’s battery is dying, and that is when radios become most important.