How to start an internet radio station in under 10 minutes without any chunky equipment, dedicated servers, plenty of bandwidth and an always on internet connection is the topic of this podcast. It’s easy with cloud-hosted solutions from Sam Vibe and Airtime Pro!

Your iTunes Love for the Podcast

Thank you for continuing to leave glowing reviews of this podcast on iTunes. It really helps to raise it up in the iTunes directory and introduces it to new people. I gave a shout out to jamiesishere and soraya452 on the podcast. Thank you both for your recent 5 star ratings.

Cloud Hosted Internet Radio Solutions

I was able to reignite an old idea of mine this week after hearing about the release of a brand new cloud internet radio solution that takes care of your media, hosting, playlists and automation all in the cloud. There are two products that I’m looking into right now. At the time of releasing this podcast Sam Vibe is just over a week old and Airtime Pro from Sourcefabric is just under a year old. I feel we’ll see more cloud based internet radio hosts and with them I hope internet radio will florish.

It’s logical that you could host your whole radio station up in the cloud just as Amazon S3 host buckets of files, Dropbox allow you to cloud share files and Evernote records every note you take to ‘the cloud’.

Radio Stations in the Cloud

It’s been my ambition to start an internet radio station but I simply have not found the time to research, go out and buy the right equipment to host it from home. A cloud host that takes care of all that for you makes it so easy. You just sign up, login, upload your audio and click once to put your radio station ‘on air’.

Internet Radio Station Storage

There’s plenty of cloud storage to get you started. Sam Vibe starts you off with half a GB on their free level which rises to 5 GB if you open your wallet and Airtime Pro give you 10 GB to host all your media files on their basic plan. Both services allow up to 10 simultaneous listeners and you can pay for more as and when your internet radio station takes off.

Music Licensing

You could just select to run a speech based internet radio station with production from Music Radio Creative (which doesn’t require any performing rights licenses) but to broadcast music you will need the correct licenses.

The following is not to be considered legal advice:

In the UK you can purchase a Limited Online Music License from PRS for music as long as you’re not making over £12,500 from your internet station and the basic licence starts at around £118 per annum. You will also need to make separate negotiations with PPL if you’re in the UK and their licenses start from around £189 per annum to get up and running. In the US you would need to start by looking into SoundExchange and the basic non-commercial webcaster/microcaster license starts from around $500 a year.

Why Start An Internet Radio Station?

It’s a hobby for me, call it a boy’s project, I’ve always wanted to start up and run my own radio station ever since I was a kid. It also fits in with my plan of ‘being everywhere’ in the words of Pat Flynn. I have a podcast and now I would like to have a 24/7 web stream for Music Radio Creative. I plan to have the radio station online by the end of 2012 so watch this space!

Sign Up and Start Your Own Radio Station

Here are the links to sign up yourself and try cloud hosted internet radio software.

Sam Vibe – The basic level is completely free, I’ve had a great response from their customer service team and it’s easy to use if not a little basic. Sam Vibe hosts your stream on Spacial’s own servers – they seem to own your web stream.

Airtime Pro – Seems to have more advanced features, the software used is open source and it may be more of a learning curve to get started. Airtime Pro set you up with Icecast a free and open source web streamer and you can also choose to self host and stream through SHOUTcast.

If you sign up to the basic Airtime Pro package with the code “freetrial” you’ll get the first month completely free with no obligation to continue the service after your free trial ends.

Hopefully we’ll see more internet radio stations as a result of this hosting method. You can create your own radio station and shut down your computer safe in the knowledge it will continue to broadcast ‘from the cloud’.

Have you got your own internet radio station or are you thinking of starting one? Please share your experiences of internet radio hosting and software in the comments.