Thursday was the second day of Arab Media Forum which started on Wednesday in Dubai. The future of radio and podcast revolution was discussed by the prominent media persons across all over the world. Though the role of technology in paving the way for how audio is presented was analyzed the industry leaders remained optimistic about whether the new podcast technology will replace the old or not.
Mahmoud Al Rasheed, general manager of the Dubai-based Arabian Radio Network (ARN), said that radio is still able to bridge communities together in the UAE through an audio platform.
“Radio has a good rapport with the audience because of its spontaneous nature, it is emotional, and makes it easy for listeners to tune in as it is like listening to a friend,” he said.
Last month, a survey by Nielson revealed that 93 percent of the total population aged 10 and above tuned into the radio. 61.5 million hours were recorded logged in by listeners across all seven emirates in an average week, “and each listener tuning in for a weekly average of seven hours and 58 minutes”.
“Podcasts work in parallel with the radio and complements and it won’t wipe it out. But it plays a role in developing content,” Al Rasheed said.
Abdul Rahman Abumalih, founder of the Thmanyah LTR website said, “Podcasts came to this part of the world within the last few years, but it was late… Podcasts are the new form of audio content and can be compared to the likes of the automobile, where now every model has different apps for iPhone and Android. At the end of the day, technology is what motivates consumers.”
“The trends in the US will also happen in the Arab world but at a later time, and as the internet becomes a dominant venue, the popularity of radio will also change,” he added.

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