This is not the first time I have seen this - I had a phone that the bluetooth was disabled in the early days of blue tooth - go figure - and the Sony Xperia Z had an FM chip in it and the manufacturer software sitting on the home screen - disabled.
Carriers have long played fancy free with the feature sets that the device manufacturers include in their product and market as key value items.
Many times, I have heard, oh that is a manufacturer issue, or we don't support that feature - when it comes to FM radio chips, there is no support required on the carrier's part - if it fails over time, you will get it fixed through warrenty or privately if you so choose.
Definitely something I have found very frustrating - first you determine whether a product has the feature set you want, then you have to figure out if the carrier will support it and try getting that information in advance of buying it. That is where I am looking forward to the longer buyer's remorse period.
I still keep my Q10 around because it had FM radio. I have had FM radio in my pocket for 50 years now in some manner or other, even when MP3 players came out, I got the ones with FM radio.
Thanks everyone and i just confirmed with my sister who works for Samsung Canada Mobile Department for tech support, she says the big three due disable the fm radio, and well ill just flash my radio with usa radio
and that will enable my fm radio and better battery life.
Rogers can you explain why you have disabled our FM after we pay 1200$ for this device.
Did you know that your Samsung smartphone has FM chip built in? That chip has not been activated by your carriers (BIG 3). Disabling chip makes you buy bigger data package sometimes also pay additional dollars for overuse. Samsung has done its part by adding FM receiver chip to their phones; now its Service providers obligation to Re-enable that chip in their devices.
The benefit of having Working FM chip on your phone.
• Save 3x the battery life of your phone – compared to streaming service
• Save 20x the data use on your phone – compared to streaming service
• Allow for emergency broadcasting and public safety alerts as mandated in the NPAS system (wildfire, floods and other natural disasters) when there is no network to
• Like me, if you travel a lot outside the country, free music FM never hurts. FM radio of that city can tell you lot more about that city than what you see. Roaming cost me $7 a day in addition to phone plan from TELUS when I was in Chicago last time just for streaming music on Spotify.
I love my local z98.9 and my92.1 FM radio and not a single day goes by when I am not tuned in to this to channels and I would love if I could hear them on my phone just by plugging in my headphones. Check my attached video.
Very soon Canada will have more mobile competition to open up the strangle hold that the 3 have which our own government is so scared to even deal with, when that happen big the start to fall down.
disabling features on a phone is just like the big 3 factory locking our phones which now next month will change
people need to not be afraid to ditch there provider, i ditch telus after 23 years and ok service
and moved to rogers. no difference to tell you the truth.
Can someone please explain to me why FM radio is not enabled on the G955W. This model with a Snapdragon 835 has all the necessary hardware to make it work and yet its intentionally been disabled in the software. I've made inquiries with Samsung and they referred me to contact Rogers to get this feature working. I bought this device directly from the manufacturer unlocked and yet Rogers seems to be responsible for disabling something I'd like to be able to use. There are times were I'd rather not use wifi or data to get something that my phone can ostensibly support natively so can someone from Rogers please explain this to me?
To the question is this just an echo chamber - in a way yes - if the moderators have not been given authority to explain with transparency, then we do contacts with companies, and it is clear to me after having three phones that had FM radio - an early Nokia that was not disabled on FM - it still is my backup phone and radio and mp3 player backup, my old Logitech mp3 player had FM radio, and Blackberry did not allow the big three to disable the feature, so the manufacturer can force the feature sets, if they so choose - I still have my Q10 with FM and MP3 and video playing, my daughter's Sony Xperia, as I mentioned earlier, when she first bought it from Rogers, it wasn't disabled, but things like Spotify weren't being pushed yet, then on an upgrade, the chip got disabled.
But silence means that Rogers has no intention to speak to it other than, I can understand how frustrating it can be to not get the full feature set of a phone you have carefully researched. At this time, there are no reported plans to support it, but if something new arises, we will report it.
They have way too much control over features on phones, and if the manufacturers won't force it (FM radio requires nothing from the carrier network, other features may require network configuration and I can see that = although I don't buy it when it comes to things like WIFI calling and other features that run on their branded phones - they could easily push the patch out as Blackberry did it for years - requires cooperation with the manufacturer - this is just another way like locking to force us to buy their products directly from them - oh yeh, Apple tends to by pass this too as their updates come from their stores - Blackberry - old BB10 OS and before and Apple don't let carriers touch programming much to maintain high security).
I have escalated the concerns, and sent to CRTC and framed it recently under restriction our choice of where to move to and use our unlocked phones, and I was told they are listening to the issue from many, and in principle it does impose a restriction on choice and movement and have sent it along with other issues, like wholesale Internet pricing on the high speed channels back to the working groups).
Unfortunately on the FM issue, unless you have a techy type person who can bypass and activate the chip, you are kind of stuck at this time as they all do it.
We have to keep the pressure on these companies that we want freedom to choose our phones and then our carriers and if the carrier can't support the feature, we look elsewhere, or keep pressuring.
Glad to see this discussion is still on going.
Is it legal? Unfortunately yes. Here is a quote from a Global story on how to activate the FM radio by installing the software. The story was about how the FM feature would come in handy in the during the fires in Fort McMurray in 2016 as many towers went down during the fire, and in addition, the FM feature requires so little power to run. So you can save your power for hearing emergency reports and when you can get a signal to make a phone call to report your safety.
In a wired article, also in 2016, they talk about the fact that all Qualcomm modem chips found in many phones now have the FM chip included.
Now what makes it legal - yes, we do own the phone - basically, we own the device, but the software and firmware that takes it from being a bunch of useless electronics, screens, and plastic, we purchase the right to use the licenses attached to the software and firmware. Using Windows as an analogy - any computer builder can sell you a license (note the word license to use Windows), then add any features of their own to the computer.
When we purchase a phone, we also purchase an installed software (OS and feature set) and as the global article said,Perhaps surprisingly, your phone may be able to switch roles and work as a traditional FM radio — if its maker, or your wireless company, allows it.
The manufacturer can choose to enable a feature set in the chips on the device, or to disable it. Samsung has chosen to turn theirs on since 2016 and to advertise it as a feature under their product description.
In the US, most carriers, under pressure of the FCC and public, one carrier at a time has turned the option on with committees at Congress indicating they would prefer to see it turned on for emergency alert.
In Canada, our powers that be have chosen to be silent on this issue, instead requiring the alert messaging over the network to be implemented by wireless carriers and by BDU's like Rogers cable, leaving the existing alert system on FM radio and broadcast TV unavailable to many unless you watch broadcast over the air.
So it would appear that our current CRTC approach is to not concern themselves with getting into this discussion. Requests in the Global article for comment were ignored by carriers and by CRTC and the minister in charge.
The only reason I personally see that they turn it off is so that we are forced to go to things like the music over the Internet like spotify and others and even the FM stations are broadcast on HeartRadio if I recall.
I still have two older phones, both bricks as far as the network is concerned, a Blackberry Q10 which Blackberry at the time did not let Rogers turn the feature of FM off as it was a key marketed feature in all their ads and they made a very big deal when they set it up. I also have an old Nokia that has FM too. I use both of them for FM and for MP3 playing while leaving my phone as a phone (I don't have data anyway).
So legal, yes, it is a contract around licensing, can a manufacturer force it, yes, and we don't own the right to use all feature sets. It is similiar to our modems for Internet - not all features are available to us either because Rogers has chosen not to support them, or they are unreliable and therefore not supported (USB NAS drives for example and many others).
So, yes the carriers can turn on or off any feature on the device because it may not be reliable of functional on their network, or they don't want to invest in supporting the feature, or for marketing reasons - in some executive meeting, never to be spoken to us, other than they don't support the feature, they chose to in that network programming cycle of updates, remove the feature.
In the US, customers got it changed, continue to talk about it, or another option, but you will lose other features is to buy the phone from Samsung direct. You will probably lose things like WIFI calling, and voice over LTE for sure. As Rogers says, they don't support all features of a device not purchased directly from Rogers.
You are not the first to come forward and challenge this whole thing,
But legal yes, and yes, you own the phone, but not the software to the features unfortunately.
Sept 2018 FM on newer phones.
In the US, there has been a collaboration due to push from consumers, the congress which led to a collaboration for many carriers to leave the FM chips capable of functioning using an android app called NextRadio.
On this site, you will find reference to the networks who now support/allow the FM chip on http://freeradioonmyphone.ca/ Only Rogers and Bell do it now.
There is a list of phones supported by NextRadio app on http://nextradioapp.ca/supported-devices/
Interestingly, my daughter's Sony Xperia Z1 which originally supported FM chip on board, stopped during an update a few years back pushed down when it was locked to Rogers.
I recently loaned it to my sister in law on her visit - it is now unlocked - we reset it to factory, and low and behold the FM chip worked again. No idea why, but that now gives me 4 devices in my collection of BB's and androids that support FM - they are my old fashioned MP3 player, fm radio, recording devices, as you can record the FM stream on some.
Plus can listen to FM with no data and battery lasts for ever.
So my Sony now is my sports tracking device, my FM radio, and MP3 player -that is it. I used my newer LGG4 for phone use and communications and since the new Google Fit doesn't work properly, I run that app on my old phone. Still have no data, have no use for it, but get full use for my phone.
Only things that I can't do without data - WIFI calling - could benefit with it, but just wait for a better signal and if people can't get me, they leave a message - I only make about 20 calls sent and received per month, so not an issue if people can't get me briefly. I just tell people where I am, you know like the old days.
I also can't use VOLTE - again, doesn't matter to me, my wife has it, I don't notice any difference.
So, if you get one of the phones on the list, try NextRadio, it is supposed to work. If it doesn't on one of the designated devices, then I suggest you contact tech support, refer them to the web sites in question, and ask why, open a ticket and escalate if necessary. Have them turn it on, or explain why their position is opposite from the publically posted information from a company working world wide and they say both Rogers and Bell support/allow the chip to function.
Guess enough pressure - they also run a campaign on how to promote FM radio as well as the benefits of data radio so that carriers are providing the best tools to all customers.
No reason why carriers have to feel that they are losing revenue on data based media provision, while providing full emergency reporting and best satisfaction by customer - there are things that FM cannot provide - like on demand music, search and download, etc. But don't disable our ability to have access to emergency information. Ottawa area was without cell towers for two areas in some areas, just last week, but the radio stations were still on air.