Pubradio news stations join iTunes Radio lineup

By Ben Mook

Expanding NPR’s footprint as the first news provider on Apple’s iTunes Radio, 42 member stations join the  lineup today.

iTunes Radio, which is integrated into Apple’s iTunes software, already features a 24-hour stream of NPR content that includes national newscasts and stories from Morning Edition and All Things Considered.

As of today, web streams of 42 stations are being offered to iTunes users, including: KPCC in Pasadena, Calif.; WBEZ, Chicago; KWMU, St. Louis; KUT in Austin, Texas; North Country Public Radio, Canton, N.Y.;  KQED, San Francisco; WNYC, New York; Minnesota Public Radio and Colorado’s Aspen Public Radio.

The 42 stations on the inaugural launch make up about 55 percent of all member stations that provide online streams of their broadcasts, said Bob Kempf, NPR Digital Services general manager. NPR Digital plans to continue adding to the lineup, bringing the total of number of local station streams offered to 91 by year’s end.

All pubradio stations joining iTunes Radio air news and information programming. As a condition of participating, they must program either Morning Edition or All Things Considered, or both, during drive-time dayparts.

By the end of the year, NPR Digital plans to revamp NPR’s  main iTunes radio station to combine national and local content, according to Kempf. The new software will use geolocating technology to connect listeners to the nearest member station.

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