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3 Best FM Transmitter App for Android: FM Radio Apps Without Internet

Do you still tune in to your favorite local radio station?

We do. While we can now mostly stream news or listen to music online, we still cannot totally move on from the glorious days of radio. Thankfully, we can still do that using our smartphones. But not without the help of the FM transmitter app for Android.

Here’s the thing:

Back in 2004, most cell phones came with radio functionality. You can easily tune in to your favorite local radio station whether they are on FM (Frequency Modulation) or AM (Amplitude modulation).

Unfortunately, the radio app that some of us surely enjoyed with our phone back then was just experimental marketing. It turns out that manufacturers and brands concluded most consumers, if not all, will not use the radio function of their phones.

That’s why…

Many smartphones now don’t come with a radio feature. And the sad thing is that most mobile phone providers disabled the radio app.

Their reason?

That consumers prefer to customize and stream news or listen to music online instead of listening to the radio.

Well, that might be true. But that doesn’t’ mean that the radio app is now obsolete. It’s still hanging in there, battling against the ever-changing times.

We can’t deny the fact that we are getting more and more dependent on online services. The radio may be dying, but not to the point that we’re ditching it completely.

In times of calamity, at times when we can’t rely on the internet and online services, we can always turn to the radio…like a dependable old-time friend that will never let us down.

For those of us who think that smartphones should still come with a radio app, hope is not all lost.

There’s a way…

So we’ve prepared the best FM transmitter app for Android. Read on…

Related: Offline Music App

3 Best FM Transmitter App for Android Smartphones

So with that in mind, we listed down 3 of the best FM transmitter apps for Android. If you’re looking for a way to listen to the radio using your smartphone then this article is for you. We listed down 3 of the best apps that you can use to either listen to FM or AM.

The selected apps are capable of making your smartphone play and listen to your local radio stations. It’s like having an FM radio app or TuneIn app.

So without further ado, let’s unlock the hidden FM Tuner in your Android phone:

Note:

  • Unfortunately, there isn’t an app capable of using the chip of any phone to turn the stored music within the phone and transmit it via Frequency Modulation (FM) Radio. The only way to do this is via FM Transmitter External devices.
  • Please do note that not all smartphones are capable of receiving an FM signal. Some can while others cannot.
  • There’s really no specific way to determine if your smartphone is capable or not other than trying the first app in this list.

1. NextRadio – The Best App for Listening to Terrestrial FM Radio

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If there’s an app specifically developed to make use of a phones modem with an activated FM receiver chip, it’s NextRadio app. The app basically lets you listen to your local radio station like how traditional radio devices work.

The app works by receiving a signal from the FM terrestrial radio signal. By doing so, you will be able to listen to any of your local radio stations without data connection or internet.

Unfortunately, if the FM receiver chip of your smartphone is not activated, then you won’t be able to use this app. Furthermore, you pretty much can’t do anything about it. Your only choice is to listen to online radios.

If this app works for you, do keep note that the app requires the use of a wired headphone as its medium for receiving radio signals. Your wired earphone acts as an antenna.

Refer here for a complete list of supported devices.

Note: If you are unable to find this app on your Google Play store app, chances are, your smartphone doesn’t have an activated FM receiver chip. If that’s the case, ultimately, you’re done. You can’t do anything about it.

2. Spirit2 – The Best Over-the-Air FM Radio App for Rooted/AOSP ROM’d Android Phones

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If your smartphone is included in the list of supported devices for the NextRadio app but unable to use or install the actual app, then you might want to try the Spirit2 app. The Sprit2 app is an app that’s quite similar to the first app in this list. The only difference between this app and the first one is that this app requires a rooted Android device. Otherwise, you won’t be able to use this app.

The app basically utilizes the FM receiver chip to allow your phone to listen to your a local radio station. It does, however, requires an earphone/headphone as an antenna.

If you want to use this app, make sure to know how to root an Android smartphone. You can learn more about Android rooting by reading our “How to Root Android” guide.

It is also worth noting that this app was developed by a single developer named Mike Reid. He started developing this app in early 2012 and his journey in developing this app has ended around 2015. You can check out his history of developing this app of XDA-Forums.

The Spirit2 app is no longer available on the Google Play store. You can, however, download it from either XDA-Forums or from Third Party Sources.

Disclaimer:

  • The JoyofAndroid team would like to remind our readers that we are not affiliated to any of the download links/sources for this app.
  • joyofandroid.com and its staff will not be responsible for the following:
    • any possible damages that may occur from downloading the app from mentioned sources.
    • any damages caused by rooting your Android device.
  • The requirements for this app to work must be done at your own risk.

List of Supported Devices:

Phones running “Compatible AOSP”** ROMs:

  • Samsung GS3 GT-I9300
  • Samsung GS2 GT-I9100
  • Samsung GS1 GT-I9000
  • Samsung Note2 GT-N7100
  • Samsung Note1 GT-N7000
  • HTC One (GPE requires BT off)
  • HTC OneXL LTE, OneS, Evo 4G LTE (2013 CM11 only. 2014 kernels broke FM)
  • LG G2 D802 International
  • Sprint LS980
  • Motorola Moto G
  • Xperia T

Lastly, phones with Qualcomm WCN3660 or compatible FM/BT/WiFi chips as well as Qualcomm WDC9310.

3. Radio FM – The Best Online Internet Radio App for Android

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If all else fails, that could only mean that your smartphone has its FM receiver chip fully disabled. Rendering your phone the inability to listen to your local radio stations without a data connection or the internet, over-the-air. If this is the case, then the next best thing that we can recommend is the Radio FM app. The best app for streaming online internet radio all around the globe.

Radio FM is the only app in the Play store that’s offering the true Radio Experience with best tuned featured for FREE, meaning it doesn’t have any in-app ads. There are a lot of things you can do with this app and you can learn all of them by visiting the developer’s website.

The best thing about this app other than its features is that its compatibility with Android Auto, Google Chromecast, and works well with Android Wearable devices. Cool right?

Those are the 3 best FM transmitter apps for Android in every possible case. However, if you don’t want to go through the hassle of having any of the listed apps, then we highly recommend getting an FM Modulator Adapter for your smartphone instead.

Doosl Wireless FM Transmitter Modulator Adapter for Smartphones – $12.95

FM Transmitter, Doosl Universal Wireless in-Car Radio Adapter FM Modulator Music Player & Hands-Free Calls
Doosl Universal FM Transmitter Mobile Adapter – FM Modulator

The Doosl Universal FM Transmitter Adapter is a portable FM Receiver device that works on most mobile devices, including Android phones, with 3.5mm audio jack. It can also be used on most devices with 3.5mm audio jack such as cars, stereos, TVs, and more!

It has an internal 300mAh rechargeable battery that’s rated to last for 10 hours continuous play. It also supports hands-free phone conversation through the car stereo for safe driving.

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Related Questions People Ask About

Related links:

Why You Can’t Listen to Radio On Your Smartphone

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FM Radio on Android Smartphone

Most handset smartphone models nowadays don’t support the use of Radio. It has been like this since around 2008. It is an undeniable fact that the Radio functionality for phones is dying out. As manufacturers and brands move to a more profitable solution by means of data connectivity and online radio streaming.

However, there are still a lot of phones that still have this functionality. Samsung’s 2019 Flagship smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy S10+, still has FM Radio functionality available which is great.

For a complete list of Android smartphones that features FM Radio functionality, refer to this list.

We hope that this article guide was helpful to you. If you have comments, questions, or suggestions, do let us know in the comment section below!

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24 Comments

  1. Just buy a $2 cable and connect it from the headphone jack on your phone to the media jack in your car and the music on your phone will play through your car speakers. No need to download anything or spend $79.

    1. You must be young. A lot of cars don’t have an auxiliary port. Only a cassette player or a cd player. My car only has a cd player.

  2. Can any FM station be selected, or does it have to be one that’s not receiving a signal? My problem with other FM transmitters is that when you’re driving long distances, the ‘non-used’ stations start to pick up signals, interfering with the phone’s music. You constantly have to find new ‘non-used’ dial settings. Is this also an issue with Tune link Auto?

    1. even with my precious nokia n8 it do happens..d best u can do is to choose the max frequency or the lowest frequency. stations dont go to that top or low so often.

  3. This has to be my second favourite piece of writing of the
    last few days, i can’t tell you the very best,
    it may offend you!

    1. Hi Lily,
      No offense taken. We all have our opinions. What one person loves, the other one hates. Thanks for commenting.

  4. I think it’s cool, but for the non tech savvy here, the phone really isn’t the fm transmitter, this product is essentially a Bluetooth device. Converting audio to BT to be resent over RF in the FM spectrum is going to have significant losses in fidelity. Especially for the price point, it’s just not scaleable.

    1. Hi Brandon,
      Thanks for your feedback and hopefully you will find an app that better fits your needs in future posts. Thanks for commenting!

      1. I have a LG G4 and i bought a premier audio fm transmitters to play through my trucks system. My truck is a 98 dodge ram3500 slt laraime 24valve Cummins turbo diesel. It just has a cd and a tape player. The aux cord starting acting like it wasnt getting connection very good and would cut in and out. I had plugged all the way in on my phone and transmitter. So i tried to use the usb port. And my phone started freezing up and i had to restart my phone. Would like to know what i would have to do. Without buying a new transmitter and stuff.

  5. Very misleading. What you are describing is not a direct FM transmitter from your cell phone to a nearby FM radio, you are describing a device that you plug into your cell phone, that device connects to your phone via bluetooth, then sends the audio on to a nearby radio via FM frequencies. Your article starts by making it sound as if the app itself turns the android phone into a FM transmitter. It does not.

    1. Hi JJ,
      We all have our personal opinions and what seems right to some may seem wrong to others, it’ s the diversity of opinions and we appreciate that you share yours. I re-read what you mentioned and at least to me it didn’t sound misleading since thanks to the app it’ s like your phone turned into an FM transmitter. Our intention is to never mislead anyone and we apologize if the title or the beginning of the article made you waste any time. Thank you for commenting. =-)

  6. Seriously, why mess around with all this when all you need is a $10-$15 fm transmitter that plugs right into your phone’s audio jack.

  7. This article has false information. It says that Radio FM is ad free so I decided to download it. As soon as I selected a radio station and the music started playing I immediately got an annoying ad that popped up within 3 seconds. The music stopped playing and the ad had annoying audio and video. This happened to me twice. I immediately downloaded this app. IHeartRadio is much better.

  8. The device that you mentioned is a “Transmitter”. Takes the audio (MP3, Streaming, etc) on your phone and converts it to FM Radio waves to be picked up by another receiver (e.g.: car stereo).

    The apps that you menitoned is the OPPOSITE. The apps use the receiver on your chip to RECEIVE FM radio waves so you can hear them on your phone or headphones.

    I came here to investigate the Apps to use my chip, NOT the device that you mention at the end of the article.

    1. Hi Emilio, sorry to disappoint you mate but unfortunately, there isn’t an app capable enough to actually use the hardware of a smartphone and successfully transmit saved music via Frequency Modulation (FM) Radio signal.

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