Aussie-founded smartphone app, VoiceByte, has partnered with iHeartMedia, enabling users to broadcast their thoughts and opinions on popular “radio programs, TV shows, podcasts and live events” through their mobile phone.
The strategic partnership incorporates VoiceByte’s technology into iHeartMedia’s platform, said to offer the “largest reach of any radio or television outlet in America”.
The new innovation is set to turn a smartphone into a “media microphone”, allowing users to record voice content on their smartphones, and within seconds allow that content to be curated and broadcast on iHeartMedia’s programs.
In support of the app, content created by audience members via VoiceByte will be integrated into Ryan Seacrest’s “American Top 40” and “On Air With Ryan Seacrest”.
Such an integration will allow listeners to ask celebrities questions or interact with Seacrest on various topics.
Under the agreement, iHeartMedia will take a “part-ownership stake” in VoiceByte, and will also “extensively” market and promote the app across the United States, encouraging users to download and interact with VoiceByte.
The integration of iHeartRadio and VoiceByte was previously unveiled at the iHeartRadio Music Festival in Las Vegas. At the festival, the app’s patented geo-location technology was used to help brands engage with fans.
The partnership stipulates that VoiceByte gives iHeartMedia – and other future media partners – access to its patent-pending dashboard, which “aggregates and filters” audio files for producers to download and play on air. The dashboard also provides detailed audience data (e.g. on sentiment and location) which helps content-makers better understand audiences.
VoiceByte CEO and Co-founder, Michael Fenech, affirms that the new partnership will help drive the app’s future, amidst a changing user landscape:
“We believe your voice is the most powerful instrument in the world and we wanted to give the audience a tool to help them use that instrument to express themselves and literally be a part of the show. We are proud that iHeartMedia shares this vision and that they will be playing an integral part in helping us to globalise VoiceByte”
“The change in audience engagement is perhaps best symbolized through the integration on Ryan Seacrest programs. His American Top 40 program has been a staple of American pop-culture for close to 50 years and has always moved with the times. It is a big statement that VoiceByte will be a part of this program’s future”.
Joe Robinson, President of iHeartMedia Ventures, claims that the partnership will be a revolutionary asset for media broadcasters:
“Our support in VoiceByte shows our commitment to technology-driven innovation. We are always looking for more ways to further engage with our listeners and VoiceByte puts a microphone in their pockets allowing them to actively participate with their favourite on air personalities and programs”
“We believe VoiceByte is a great new asset for engagement and a game-changer for broadcasters”.
Stephen Fenech, VoiceByte CTO, believes the app is catering to consumer’s changing tastes and behaviours amidst a new world of broadcast media:
“The way we are interacting with media and the way we receive our news and information is rapidly changing. Our thinking was to give the audience a way to be a part of their favourite programs and the social media conversation at the same time by using the device that’s by their side around the clock, their mobile phones”