Mainstream Japanese Internet Radio at last May 29, 2006Posted by fukumimi in IT, Japan, Music.
J-Wave, one of the more popular Tokyo based radio stations (they have a great view of Tokyo from their studio/office facilities on the 33rd floor of Roppongi Hills Mori Tower), has launched Japan's first major internet radio station, Brandnew-J.
Broadcasts started today, however the site says it only supports the IE6.0 and WMP to actually listen to the programming. This is a beta launch for the station, with the full service slated to start in October.
The station has dedicated programming (it is not a web feed of the over-the-air broadcast), and is broadcast live from 10am to 10pm local time, with recorded broadcasts for the other 12 hours.
The fact the over-the-air broadcast is not streamed is probably due to the difficulty in managing the various rights negotiations (copyright neighbouring rights) which are still laborious for internet based broadcast services.
Still, it is promising that a big name player has launched a service, others have announced similar efforts. It will only help speed up the adoption of the internet as a broadcast medium, and hopefully drive legislative change.
Now all we need is a Japanese Squeezebox and for mini-system and boombox manufacturers to put internet radio functionality onto their systems.