Next Gen iPhone to Support... FM Radio?!

iPhone 2.0: Spidey Sense to Tingle?

Confession: I haven't listened to FM radio since... well, since I got my iPhone, but it seems FM isn't just for Top 40 any more. 9 to 5 Mac, which found more details on the previously mentioned Broadcom BCM4329 wireless chip, which could include:

the ability to receive and send (the previous model could only receive) information through FM radio signals which theoretically could be used to broadcast sound into car stereos..without external adapters. It could also be used to pick up FM radio music, news and sports broadcasts on their iPhones and even, in August, on iPods. Currently the FM reciever is only used to pick up communications from the Nike+ peripheral.

Of course, just because the chip supports it, doesn't mean Apple will surface that support, or use it for anything other than what it already does (like Nike+).

But here's the thing: are the rumors flying just a little too fast and too far now? Are we really going to get everything and a bag of quad-core chips in the next iPhone hardware release, or are we -- as per standard internet protocols -- just hyping ourselves up for massive disappointment come June?

[via MacRumors]

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Rene Ritchie

EiC of iMore, EP of Mobile Nations, Apple analyst, co-host of Debug, Iterate, Vector, Review, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Reader comments

Next Gen iPhone to Support... FM Radio?!


As always, some rumors will likely prove to be true while most fall by the wayside. I suspect this will fall into the latter category.

These rumors are way too frequently reported and speculative, given the history of Apple rumors.
Of course there is a particular chipset manufactured to provide a bunch of features, and of course Apple won't be implementing all of them. The Neuros "Audio Computer" had an FM transmitter, I believe, and that was years ago.
And besides, the iPhone chipset has always had Bluetooth, and only now are we seeing better support for BT.
It will be interesting to see what exactly the next model of the iPhone will have to offer. It will also be interesting what the jailbreak for it will have to offer. But trying to divine the features of the next iPhone based on just hardware capabilities, even if we knew them with 100% certainty, is a waste of time, IMO.

The problem with all these rumors is that you end up feeling underwhelmed with what is really released since no real product can live up to all the rumors. Remember last year we were thinking about video chat, hi-res screens, 32 GB memory, better camera, faster processors, 3G, and GPS (plus copy and paste, MMS, video recording, etc). Basically of all that we got only 3G and GPS. I expect to get a couple things this year too, but not everything that the rumor mill is cranking out (although I'd love to be wrong).

I wish Apple would focus on perfecting all means of communication first... Then worry about all of this entertainmemt and kiddie stuff later.

I could see this on themes iPods doesn't FM signals interfere with celluar signals ?
I would never just turn on airplain to use a radio.

I doubt this will prove true but I'd certainly like to have fm radio for the times I would like it and not having to use a external device to link to the stereo would be even sweeter.

I really don't see Apple putting an FM transmitter into anything. FM is played out and dying. Apple had a huge hand in killing FM radio. I can't even remember the last time I listened to FM/AM radio between burned CDs, iPod/iPhone, and Sirius in my car.

Maybe I am the only one, but I would like this. Would be nice so I wouldn't have to buy anything to connect it to my car. I still like some FM stations too.

This fm transmiter could be true, if you have 3.0 beta2 jailbroken if you look in the apps there is a also there is a but that has nothing to do with it, if you say that the Nike communicates through FM and ONLY FM then I'd call it true since I'm sure they will be using 3.0 on new iPhones.

Can't see Apple destroying the FM transmitter market, plenty of the third party accessories make alot from those things.

After thinking about it, I agree with frog and others. If Apple can monetize it, like with the Nike app, then it will be a feature restricted to that purpose. But when it comes to adding a feature that will eliminate a whole line or two of accessories, it's doubtful Apple would do something like that.