The decision made by the Oakland A’s to abandon radio and only broadcast their games on TuneIn didn’t work out too well. Turns out, the fans want to hear their favorite team, their favorite broadcasters, on the radio. As a result of fan feedback, Oakland is back on the radio.
Back in February, after they were unable to strike a deal with any radio station to broadcast their games, the A’s decided to stream their games. Then COVID-19 hit, the season was delayed and fans waited. As the shortened season resumed, and with fans unable to attend games, the last thing they wanted was to have to search the Internet for their team, or deal with buffering on their device. Not to mention, the obvious, how radio is the best medium at painting that perfect picture of the game of baseball.
The Oakland A’s announced Thursday that the remaining 54 games of the 2020 season will be broadcast on Bloomberg 960 AM (KNEW), starting tonight against the Mariners in Seattle.
A’s President Dave Kaval was interviewed by The Mercury News. “We’ve always prided ourselves in listening to our fans. And I think for a lot of fans, this was something that was important for them.”
In addition, the A’s have also partnered up with radio on the streaming side. The A’s games will move off of TuneIn and over to iHeartRadio, which has a much larger listening base. Kaval told the newspaper that using TuneIn was confusing for fans because the platform was constantly asking them to buy a subscription. “I think a lot of people were confused with the user experience. So they thought they had to pay, a lot of people would get in there and think they had to pay. That wasn’t a great experience. We did something to streamline that, but it was confusing for a lot of folks. The terrestrial option is super easy for folks who are used to that. Even if maybe some of the Gen Z-ers will need to be shown how to use the radio.”