Between downloading local files and the vast array of streaming services, your options for listening to music while on the go are more abundant than ever before. Now, thanks to a new partnership with NextRadio, future Samsung phones will ship with a working FM chip so you can access and listen to local radio stations.
Most phones have the tech to support FM signals, but they're unfortunately often disabled from doing so due to pressure from wireless carriers. LG, Motorola, and Alcatel have previously joined NextRadio in offering active FM chips to their customers, but Samsung is definitely the biggest name to be added so far.
In other words, expect the 3.5mm headphone jack to stay on future Samsung phones.
Listening to music on a radio station through FM signals might sound archaic compared to streaming your favorite tunes on Pandora or iHeartRadio, but there are serious benefits that it brings. You can still listen to FM stations even when you're without a reliable data connection, and in addition to music, they're also a great source for local news, weather, and other information.
Also as a fun side note, this announcement is also pretty much a guarantee that Samsung will be keeping the 3.5mm headphone jack on at least some of its phones for the foreseeable future. Wired headphones serve as the antenna used for picking up FM signals, and seeing as how we're already expecting the Galaxy S9 to keep the 3.5mm port, this seems like further reassurance of what we were already hoping for.
Upcoming Samsung phones in the United States and Canada will have access to these working FM chips, and you'll be able to tap into them with the NextRadio app on the Play Store.