The Trump administration’s new chairman believes that smartphone manufacturers should enable the FM radio in the devices.
Recode reports that FCC Chairman Ajit Pai believes that access to FM radios inside of smartphones is a public safety issue.
Pai notes that enabling the radio would be better for public safety as internet/cell phone service isn’t always available. This includes situation such as natural disasters or severe weather where cellphone towers may be offline.
However, we shouldn’t be expecting immediate change.
Pai says that he doesn’t want the government to force the hands of smartphone manufacturers and hopes that they sort it out among theirselves.
As a believer in free markets and the rule of law, I cannot support a government mandate requiring activation of these chips. I don’t believe the FCC has the power to issue a mandate like that, and more generally I believe it’s best to sort this issue out in the marketplace.