Boy oh boy, the era of convergence is truly upon us. I can’t even keep track of how many different things are converging in this new offering from Triton Digital, which creates online and mobile applications and services for radio broadcasters.
Triton’s new “Check In Radio” service lets radio listeners “check in” to their favorite radio stations to enter contests via an app on their smartphone. This mobile-social check-in can take the place of actually calling in to the station, as in days of yore -- significantly lowering the barrier to participation (a click on your smartphone has to be less hassle than dialing up the station, giving your name and contact info, and so on).
On the station end, after registering their station broadcasters simply announce contests on the air as usual, but ask listeners to “check in” via the smartphone interface within a specified time period to be automatically entered into the contest. On the listener end, the app (which is available for free for iPhone and Android mobile devices, and allows Facebook check-ins) includes a GPS-based location component that automatically pulls up stations in the listener’s vicinity.
This isn’t Triton’s first social radio offering. Beginning in March 2010, Triton has been syndicating Jelli, a digital platform which allows listeners to control broadcast airplay through online voting. Listeners can vote on audio content in real-time at a station’s Web site, or by downloading Jelli's iPhone app. The Jelli system lets users push a song to the top of the playlist by voting that it “rocks,” or vote a song off the playlist by voting that it “sucks.” If enough people vote a song down, it may even be yanked off the air in mid-tune. Jelli rewards listener engagement and loyalty by giving frequent users extra-powerful votes in the form of “Rockets” and “Bombs.”