Those were the words of FCC Chairman Thomas Wheeler at the NAB Show Wednesday. Although many wonder if the FCC has done way too little, way too late, to make that statement a reality. And, in all likelihood, with a new President about to be elected, Wheeler will be long gone before we really know if the FCC’s AM revitalization paid off.
Wheeler thinks AM radio has a bright future. He told NAB attendees, the Media Bureau has processed 500 applications for FM translators for AM station owners. He said, “AM, and radio in general, is free and portable.” He has the radio on all day in his office and listens to NPR while at work. Wheeler also likes satellite radio and has one of his car pre-sets tuned to SiriusXM Channel 72, which is broadway music. If an AM station changed to that format he’d listen to that too, he said. When asked about the FM Chip, Wheeler said, “The marketplace is succeeding, competition is working here.”
As expected the bulk of Wheeler’s comments were focused on television.