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    Indian network Big FM has launched the second season of its social initiative ‘Be Santa’ for Christmas.

    It was introduced last year with the thought of spreading joy among the underprivileged kids during Christmas by inviting donations in the form of gifts from citizens.

    This year, well known social-activist and wife of Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra FadnavisAmruta Fadnavis has come on board to launch the campaign.

    BIG FM will help shape opinions of the listeners for charity by speaking about various thought provoking situations on-air and through social experiments on-digital.

    The campaign will also involve participation from celebrities on-air encouraging the citizens to come forward and support the noble initiative by doing charity. 

    Big FM has also associated with crowdfunding platform Milap Foundation to raise funds for the cause which will be generated through the entire sequence of activities executed on-air and on digital platforms. The collections will be donated to partner NGOs across the country.

    A spokesperson from the network said: "Through such activities, our constant endeavour is to spread the positivity of sharing and donating to the underprivileged section of the society."

    Amruta Fadnavis said: "The reach of radio in driving such strong messages is aimed to have a great impact among the citizens and I look forward to witness maximum participation from them."


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    India’s international radio station Indigo 91.9 FM, which operates in Bangalore and Goa, has launched a line up of brand-new shows.  

    The Morning Show will now feature RJ Nathan and RJ Evita while Sundeep Rao – a stand-up comedian will be hosting the evening drive time show The Drive, from 5 pm weekdays.

    Kenishaa Francis - the finalist from the talent show The Stage, will host Keepin’ up with Kenishaa in the afternoons. She will engages and interacts with the listeners, exploring their singing capabilities and giving them an opportunity and a platform to showcase their talents.

    ‘On Air with Ryan Seacrest’ will air every day from 12 pm onwards.

    On Saturdays, the station has launched a travel show called The Travel Bug, hosted by RJ Evita. It takes listeners on a trip to exotic places, providing them with travel tips.

    RJ Evita will also host a weekly real estate based show called The Address every Wednesday.

    Offsite with I919 is another weekly show featuring RJs Nathan and Evita hosting the city's top corporate honchos over a casual banter, bringing out the lighter side and showcasing their hidden talents.


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    Indian network Big FM has announced the launch of its new show 'The 90s Show with Anu Malik'

    The show, hosted by Bollywood music director Anu Malik, will feature trendsetting songs and film trivia from the 90s and early millennium.

    It will air weekdays from 8 pm to 10 pm across markets.

    The show will also mark the radio network's transition into adult contemporary music format by adding remixes, mash-ups and original songs to the mix.

    Speaking about the re-positioning, Atul Razdan, National Programming Head, BIG FM said: "The decision to bring adult contemporary genre across our network is aimed at extending the reach among millennials while maintaining our existing listenership base. 'The 90s Show with Anu Malik' makes for an apt platform to announce the launch given its compelling theme that is in sync with the revamped strategy. This newest addition along with the refreshed programming line-up will mean increased audience engagement offering effective visibility to our partners."


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    India’s Union Cabinet has approved the process for e-auctioning 683 FM radio channels in 236 cities in the third batch of Phase III of private FM radio expansion, according to a government statement.

    Batch-I and Batch-II auctions of private FM radio channels under Phase-III of the FM Policy Guidelines were held in 2015 and 2016 respectively.

    97 channels in 56 cities were sold in Batch-I, and 66 channels in 48 cities were sold in Batch-II.

    The latest auction will complete the coverage of private FM radio broadcasting across all 29 states and six out of seven Union Territories - with the exception of Dadra & Nagar Haveli.

    The government said this will also to generate direct and indirect employment to more than 10,000 persons on a pan India basis, and yield an estimated revenue of more than Rs 11 billion ($171.82).

    In order to ensure transparency in the auction process, the government said it will follow the Simultaneous Multiple Round Ascending (SMRA) process.


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    Airports Authority of India (AAI) and Indigo 91.9 FM – an international music station which broadcasts in Goa and Bengaluru, have partnered to launch Goa Airport Radio at Goa International Airport.

    According to a statement, Indigo will play specially curated music for the passengers at the airport. In addition, Goa Airport Radio would have its exclusive Jockey who would interact with the passengers announce utility and flight related information as well as play music.

    B C H Negi, Airport Director, Goa International Airport, said: "Goa is one of the most popular holiday destination in India and major portion of the passenger mix at Goa Airport is young and middle-aged vacationers.”

    He further added that Goa Airport is unique in the kind of passengers it handles with demographics showing that more than 65 per cent of them were below 40 years of age.

    Satyanaryana Murthy, CEO of Indigo 91.9 FM, said: "We are excited to be partnering with the Goa International Airport to offer Radio As A Service (RAAS). W we are confident that the flyers will have a great experience while enjoying our handpicked international music."


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    94.3 Radio One India, the radio brand owned by Next Radio Ltd, has launched online re-broadcast of its Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore stations and the country’s first audio business channel live stream at www.1cast.in.

    International music lovers anywhere in India can stream three international music format FM radio stations from any internet connected digital device. 

    The audio business channel, Business One, will broadcast only on the internet from 9am to 3pm, Monday to Friday.  

    It will report on the stock market, Indian and world economy and key finance related topics and sectors that impact the business community in India.

    The site operates on a simple browser based URL and works across all PC, MAC, Android & iPhone platforms. The simple ‘save to home screen’ function in all smart devices can allow the URL icon to be saved on the desktop or home screen for easy ‘app like’ access, eliminating  the need for an app that needs constant updates.

    Vineet Singh Hukmani, MD & CEO , Next Radio Ltd said: “With data prices being so affordable and smart device penetration increasing by the day, we felt www.1cast.in is the perfect ‘steaming audio content companion’ for our upscale listeners of 94.3 Radio One. We felt internet streaming is the most economical way to spread the reach of our international network to listeners who long for global quality International Radio content in India and do not have it on their FM radio dial. With this internet re-broadcast, we hope to establish enhanced reach of our online international radio format network in the coming six to nine months thereby giving our advertisers enhanced engagement in new cities. We are confident that in the next 12 months, we will be able to breakeven on the online audio business news channel.”


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    The sales unit of All India Radio (AIR), Central Sales Unit (CSU) - which books commercials for all AIR channels nationwide, is preparing to celebrate its golden jubilee on October 1, 2018. 

    CSU was set up 10 years after Vividh Bharati started in 1957 to bring revenue through that popular music channel. There were no ads on Vividh Bharati before that.

    Today, AIR charges as little as (6.30 (Rs 400) for 10 seconds on its primary network while the costs of print and television commercials continue to rise. And it offers the advantage of having the largest reach of any broadcaster in the world.

    All India Radio has 201 primary channels and local radio stations, 41 Vividh Bharati stations, 25 FM Rainbow and five FM Gold channels.

    Festivities began on Wednesday at the AIR auditorium near Churchgate in Mumbai.

    A show called 'Lok Dhara' featured bhangra dancer Nirmal Sidhu, lavni artiste Surekha Punekar and Rajasthani Langa-Manganiyar folk musician Bundu Khan.

    In March, CSU will host a Hasya Kavi Sammelan (Comedy Poets’ Festival) followed by a ghazal concert in June culminating with a grand finale in October involving leading artistes of Hindi cinema, and stand-up comedians.

    According to CSU head Ravindra Khasnis:"For 50 years we have impacted the daily lives of billions of people but maintained a low profile. Now we realise that not many citizens are even aware of the role of CSU. For the first time we are reaching out to members of the public by organising cultural programmes for them in this landmark year." 


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    Outreach, an Indian social organisation, will honour radio personnel who have delivered excellent services to the broadcasting industry with its Outreach National Radio Award.

    The award will be given at its International Radio Fair 2018, which will be held at Bhubaneswar, Odisha, from February 12 to 14 to coincide with World Radio Day.

    The fair, which was first organised in 2014, has turned out to be the largest congregation of radio personnel from All India Radio, community radios, private commercial FM stations and listeners from all over India as well as from some other countries.

    The award comprises of six categories, including a 'Lifetime Achievement Award', which will be given to a person who has delivered excellence in the field of radio broadcasting throughout his/her life.

    'Award for Best Use of Radio in Public Service', will honour someone who has used radio for wellness and development of public.

    'Popular Radio Presenter of the Year’ award will be presented to a person who has gained mass popularity while 'Popular Radio Program of the Year’ award will be given to the one who hosts/produces the most popular radio program among the audience.

    ‘Community Radio Station of the Year' will be conferred to the community radio station which has delivered community based content as well as has worked for its development with active local involvement.

    The winners will be selected on the basis of maximum number of nominations and remarks of Jury committee.

    There will be a special 'Radio Listener of the Year' award which will be bestowed to the one who has been a dedicated and active listener throughout his life.

    Anyone can nominate one person each for the above said categories till midnight of January 25, in the official website of Outreach International Radio Fair by visiting www.radiofairindia.com.


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    Sports Flashes, an Indian sports app, has launched the country’s first 24-hour online radio channel dedicated to sports content.

    Radio Sports Flashes, which is available on the Sports Flashes Mobile App and at sportsflashes.com, will broadcast in English and Hindi covering 34 sports categories.

    It will have live chat commentaries, talk shows, special sports programmes, experts’ comments, audio documentaries, sports news and updates for over 400 sports events from around the world including Premier League, IPL and the FIFA World Cup.

    Sports Flashes founder Raman Raheja said: “Our aim is to provide every single sport or sports content which missed out from being shown on Sports TV channels to have a digital platform for coverage. While promoting various Sports through our association, we are sure to increase the reach of Sports in the country.”

    The channel has partnered with various athletes including former hockey captain of India and CWG silver medallist Sandeep Singh, Arjuna Awardee and Olympian Boxer Akhil Kumar and Indian Cricket Player Wasim Jaffer.


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    Entry submissions to India’s annual Excellence in Radio Awards (ERA) to recognise and reward outstanding content and creativity in the industry in 2017 are now open.

    The awards started in 2006 and celebrate the very best of Indian radio, honouring outstanding programming, on-air personalities, marketing & promotions and creativity within the industr

    They will be held this year along with the annual one-day India Radio Forum.

    This year’s categories include Programming, Talent, Marketing & Promotions and Advertising. The panel of judges will include reputed radio, advertising, television and creative professionals.

    Last year, Red FM – along with its sister station Suryan FM, topped the winners list with 23 awards, followed by Radio Mirchi which grabbed 16 metals while Big FM was third with 15 metals.

    The last date for submitting entries is March 2.

    For details, visit www.indiaradioforum.com


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    India’s international music station, Indigo 91.9 FM – which broadcasts in Bangalore and Goa, has put together a program leading up to the Grammy Awards Ceremony next week.

    The station will celebrate the Grammy Awards, starting Sunday, by broadcasting only the best of Grammy-nominated and winning songs all through the day.

    This will be followed by real-time updates of all the action on Monday, January 29, taking listeners through the highs and lows from the award ceremony, as the music community comes together to recognize the artistic achievements for the year gone by.

     


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    Outreach, an Indian Philanthropic organization will organise the fourth edition of its International Radio Fair on the occasion of World Radio Day at Bhubaneshwar, the capital of the state of Odisha on February 12 and 13.

    The main objective of this event is to celebrate World Radio Day and increasing radio listenership while sensitizing broadcasters on the importance of radio in public service.

    Chief convener of the event Subrat Kumar Pati says: "We are encouraging youngsters to choose radio as career. Radio Fair is a platform for promotion and exchange of culture."

    During the event, Outreach will also provide assistance to community radio enthusiasts.

    Radio listeners, stations from across the world, presenters, broadcasters and technicians from different parts of India will come to celebrate the occasion.

    International broadcasters like Voice of America, China Radio International, NHK World Radio Japan, All India Radio, Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting, Adventist World Radio and Bangladesh Vetaar has confirmed their participation for joining the event.

    Ministers, Government officials, station owners, stake holders will join in meetings and share their opinion on the development of broadcasting industry.

    There will also be an exhibition of old and new radio sets, radio equipment, DRM, auxiliary studio, sand art on World Radio Day theme, philately on radio, radio repairing shop, new radio set shop and handmade radio shop.


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    The Telecom Regulatory Authority India (TRAI) has submitted its recommendations on Digital Radio Broadcasting in India and said that the government should notify a policy framework for digital radio broadcasting in the country in a time-bound manner with a clear roadmap for roll-out of services to enable smooth transition from analog to digital mode.

    It has suggested allowing private sector to provide services within the existing frequency band of 88–108 MHz used for FM radio broadcasting.

    India presently has 322 FM radio station across 86 cities.

    The authority has said that there is a need to facilitate digital radio broadcasting in India to effectively utilise spectrum in VHF-II band for Radio broadcasting, to provide diverse content and other value-added services to radio listeners.

    It also said that the government should grant fiscal incentives to manufacturers of digital radio receivers for initial three years after declaration of digital radio broadcasting policy.

    It also urged the Wireless Planning and Coordination (WPC) wing of department of telecom (DoT) to carry out necessary amendments in National Frequency Allocation Plan (NFAP)-2011 for permitting radio broadcasting including digital radio broadcasting in MW, SW, and VHF-II frequency bands also, which are already identified for and being used for radio broadcasting in India.

    It also stated that the frequency and geographical area coverage planning for digital radio broadcasting for vacant 600 KHz spectrum between two allocated FM frequencies in VHF-II band should be completed by BECIL, AIR, and WPC together within three months for category A+ (4 Metro cities), and category A cities (8 cities) in first phase.

    Frequency and geographical area coverage planning for digital radio broadcasting services using VHF-III (174-230 MHz) band of spectrum should also be carried out by BECIL, AIR, and WPC together in third phase, after this spectrum get vacated.

    It also noted that the WPC should notify the channel plan for each type of digital radio broadcasting technology.

    The authority stated that the auction should be carried out in phases – starting with cities of category ‘A+’ and ‘A’ and subsequently in cities of other categories.

    After the auction, an offer should be made to the existing FM Radio broadcasters to get their existing frequency bandwidth of +100 KHz, already allocated to them through auction in Phase-III of FM Radio, liberalised and provide digital radio broadcasting services in simulcast mode with analog FM Radio services once the auction is completed.

    “For liberalising of existing spectrum already allocated to the FM radio broadcasters in Phase-III of FM Radio, they will have to pay an amount equal to the difference of auction determined price of equivalent spectrum for digital radio broadcasting in a city and amount paid for allocation of FM radio frequency,” it said.

    Broadcasters should be allowed to make use of any available digital technology, recognized by ITU, within the allocated/liberalized spectrum for providing digital radio broadcasting services subject to adaptation, if any, recommended by MIB/TRAI from time to time.

    Existing analog FM Radio channels should be allowed to remain operational for the remaining period of their Phase-III permissions.

    The continuance of operation of existing analog FM Radio channels that do not migrate to digital radio broadcasting should be reviewed after the expiry of their existing Phase-III permissions, it stated.

    It also recommended that the auction of remaining channels of Phase-III should be done by delinking them from technology. Broadcasters should be permitted to use any technology for radio broadcasting on the frequency allocated to them through an auction in future.

    In case, Radio broadcasters opt for digital technology, they should be permitted to broadcast more than one channel subject to technical feasibility on a single frequency allocated to them.

    The government should grant fiscal incentives in the form of lower taxes to manufacturers of digital radio recievers for three years after declaring the policy, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) suggested.

    It also recommended auctioning of 200 khz bandwith spectrum in 'VHF-II' band in phases for providing digital radio broadcasting services.

    Presently, radio signals are largely transmitted in analog mode which is inefficient and suffers from operational restrictions as compared to digital mode, a TRAI statement read.

    The authority hoped that the recommendations would enable smooth transition from analog to digital radio broadcasting services.


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    Indian network Red FM joined hands with charitable organization Oxfam India to support equality across education, health and gender, through the all new edition of Oxfam’s ‘Trailwalker’ in Bangalore recently.

    Considered to be an ultimate team challenge, the event involves many teams of four individuals walk 100 km in 48 hours.

    Since 1986, over 200,000 people have taken part in it, collectively raising over $139 million to fight poverty and inequality worldwide.

    Red FM is the official radio partner of the walk and its local RJ Shaayan participated in it along with fitness enthusiast and actor Milind Soman, who also flagged off the walk.

    More than 350 teams with a total of nearly 1500 hundred walkers participated and donated, while supported by 1050 volunteers.


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    Indian network Big FM has announced the winner of the fifth season of its on-air singing talent hunt ‘Big Golden Voice’.

    Nihar Shembekar, a management graduate from Mumbai, was declared the winner among the 10 finalists who performed live at the grand finale of the contest.

    He will now get an opportunity to record a single with a renowned label.

    Shembekar has also studied sound recording and already has a Marathi song to his credit along with the popular number 'Udja Kale Kawan' from the Bollywood film Gadar - Ek Prem Katha (2001) – which he sang as a child artist at the age of 11.

    The theme for this year’s contest was ‘Folk Recreated’ where participants used folk music of India to re-create their original songs and perform it for the listeners.

    30 singers were shortlisted from offline and online auditions and the Top 10 were chosen to enter the finale. Each of them was mentored by renowned singers and music composers such as Kavita Seth, Prajakta Shukre, Aishwarya Majmudar, Shahid Mallya, Shivangi Bhayana, Hamsika Iyer, Vishal Mishra, Digvijay Singh, Harish Moyal and Rupali Moghe.
    Ace music director Anu Malik, who also served as the judge, said: “We have discovered great talent through the show and in my opinion, all 10 contestants are winners."

     Commenting on being titled the winner of Season 5, Nihar Shembekar said: "It feels surreal to have won the title. It has certainly been an experience of a lifetime to have been mentored by some of the most renowned singers in the industry and then to have proved my mettle as a singer on the show."


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    India's First Emergency Radio, Cuddalore Emergency Radio 107.8, Tamilnadu, celebrated World Radio Day (WRD) with a special WRD message by world rapid chess champion Viswanathan Anand.

    Anand spoke on ‘Radio and Sports’ and also answered questions raised by children and youth of Cuddalore district.

    Cuddalore Emergency Radio was installed during the flood of December 2015 to help people broadcast life-saving vital information.

    The station broadcasts authentic information during disaster and at other times airs disaster preparedness and nation building programs.


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    Radio Umang is a recently launched online Hindi radio station that allows listeners to tune in through web and app.

    Available on Google Play store and coming soon on App store, the station offers 24-hour programming, and has found listeners in Hindi speaking regions of India and in over 60 countries worldwide.

    It is themed around love, peace and happiness clubbed with talk shows and soothing soulful music.

    The man behind the station, Neeraj Tyagi, who had earlier founded Quick Call, which he sold to Navigant, claims: "Within just one month of launch, the station has reached listenership of over 50,000 with more than 40,000 app downloads so far."

    "Post exit of Quick call, I have been closely following music and radio industry, and I can see how the whole ecosystem favoring such a venture, as lacunae of current coverage of 100-200 kms of FM channel is detrimental," he added.

    Radio Umang plans to have multiple avenues of revenue, programmatic audio visual ads being primary one besides traditional advertising model.

    "Whole focus is on providing quality program content, that's why we have roped in Vidhi Maheshwari as Creative Director, an old hand in Radio Industry" said Tyagi.


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    The DRM Consortium, represented by its Indian and international members and partners (including All India Radio, Ampegon, BECIL, BBC, Communication Systems Inc., Fraunhofer IIS, Gospell Digital Technologies, Nautel, NXP, RFmondial), will participate in the international BES (Broadcasting Engineering Society – www.besindia.co.in) conference and exhibition on terrestrial and satellite broadcasting, taking place in New Delhi, from February 26 to 28.  

    BES EXPO is rated as the biggest broadcast technology show in India with nearly 300 exhibitors from 25 countries and an estimated 3,000 professionals and decision-makers attending.
    The DRM Consortium (www.drm.org) and one of its key Asian members, Gospell Digital Technology (www.gospell.com), will present latest DRM receiver models (including a DRM and Bluetooth car kit) and share knowledge on aspects of DRM such as the emergency warning functionality. The latest model of one of the leading automobile manufacturers in India, with a line-fit DRM receiver will be on display as well. 

    A three-day conference on the theme "Non-Linear Broadcasting - Technology and Business Models" will be held concurrently with the exhibition and will include two DRM sessions on February 28th. One will be on "Unique, Superior Features of DRM – The Latest Digital Radio Standard" and another on "The Progress of DRM in South Asia – Latest Updates and Technical Developments"

    In addition, on February 27th, DRM Consortium member Fraunhofer IIS will unveil the synergies between DRM terrestrial digital radio broadcast and latest mobile-friendly Internet streaming services, both based on the latest MPEG xHE-AAC audio codec.

    According to Ruxandra Obreja, DRM Consortium Chairman: "As DRM digital radio makes India potentially the largest digital radio market in the world, the DRM Consortium is keen to showcase the current developments and areas of great benefit delivered by DRM. Its many additional features and its capacity to link to IP creates new possibilities for listeners and the industry. Our BES presentations and demonstrations aim to show practically the progress made in India by DRM, its potential for listeners, broadcasters and industry, while learning from our Indian colleagues how the Indian media landscape is changing."


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    India’s 94.3 Radio One - the radio subsidiary of Next MediaWorks Ltd, has declared its Q3 17-18 audited financial results.

    Its revenue was up 4.3 percent to Rs 219.9 million in Q3 17-18 from Rs 210.9 million in Q3 16-17. 

    EBIDTA was up 23.6 percent from Rs 50.2 million to Rs 62 million in the same period.

    PBT was up 262 percent from a negative Rs 6.5 million in Q3 16-17 to a positive Rs 10.5 million in Q3 17-18.

    Revenue was up 11.1 percent to Rs 219.9 million in Q3 17-18 from Rs 198 million in Q2 17-18. 

    EBIDTA was up 108.1 percent from Rs 29.8 million in Q2 17-18 to Rs 62 million in Q3 17-18.

    Vineet Singh Hukmani, MD & CEO , Next Radio Ltd said: “We are happy to see a turnaround in our Q3 17-18 numbers that ride on highly improved cost efficiencies and a consistent improvement in performance across all our radio markets. Furthermore, these are ‘pure radio growth numbers’ as Radio One is the only ‘targeted’ radio player that does not do on ground events/activations thereby protecting the full value of our on air inventory.  We are seeing a glimmer of positivity in the economy thanks to the rising manufacturing index numbers. We would like to believe that the problems faced by media due to demonetization, GST and RERA are behind us and that the radio industry will be able to post a 9-10% growth in the next financial year. We feel the radio industry needs to raise rates, given the exorbitant amount of inventory utilization and we are announcing an 18% average rate increase across our 7 markets effective March 1st 2018, to meet our increased investments into upscale audience engagement on air & online.

    94.3 Radio One is in its 11th year of operation and operates India’s only international radio format network in the three largest radio revenue markets of Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore and the only upscale Hindi formats in Pune, Kolkata, Chennai & Ahmedabad.  


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    Indian network Radio City 91.1FM has announced a collaboration with Apple Music for a Bollywood countdown chart show titled 'Apple Music Top 25'.

    The show will highlight the best music of the week from Apple Music weekly charts.

    RJ Divya will host the show, which will air every Saturday from 6pm to 9pm, across 25 cities.

    It will also feature exclusive segments with both popular and emerging artists from Apple Music programs such as 'Hear It Here. First.' and 'New Artist Spotlight'.

    Commenting on this collaboration, Abraham Thomas, CEO, Radio City said: "Powered by Apple Music, this will offer the most definitive chart show of popular Bollywood music to our audience. We will aim to make 'Apple Music Top 25' on Radio City the one-stop destination to keep our fans abreast of the trendiest music in the country."

    The countdown will also be available as a playlist on the Radio City curator channel on Apple Music, enabling subscribers worldwide to listen to the playlist anytime, anywhere.

    As a part of its existing association with Apple Music, Radio City also offers curated playlists that reflect six distinct themes, giving music fans an opportunity to enjoy music that resonates with their personal tastes.


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