Can Alexa play the radio? How to play Alexa radio stations

Can Alexa play the radio? Sure, she can control your lights, change channels, and play your streaming music services, but does Alexa play radio stations, too? The simple answer is Yes!

So read on for more…

You’re probably pretty familiar with the world’s favorite smart display speaker AI by now. 

According to reports for 2021, there are around 40 million users of Alexa in the US alone. The Amazon-built interface is one of the most flexible and easy-to-use in the world. In fact, many credit Alexa with starting the smart speaker boom to begin with.

But how much do you know about what Alexa can do?

Here’s everything you need to know about tuning into radio stations on Alexa.

Can Alexa play radio stations?

To play “Alexa radio,” you’ll need to access specific skills within your Alexa device.

You can do this with your iPhone or Android device. Alexa accesses the internet by tapping into internet streaming services when you activate your skill. 

There’s no FM tuning here, so you will need an internet connection to reach Alexa radio stations.

Once you’ve enabled your skills, you should be able to use Alexa’s radio function for a range of things. You can use radio stations on Alexa to wake you up in place of an alarm, or you can set the radio up to start streaming at a specific time. 

If it’s your first time trying to play radio stations on Alexa, here is a guide to get you through:

Access And enable Alexa Skills

Launch the Alexa app and navigate to “More” in the bottom right corner. Select “Skills and Games” and click the search icon. Finally, search for your preferred skill, select and enable it to start using.

Search for radio

Once the skill is active, click the search feature in the upper-right corner and search for “radio.” This will display the different radio tuners available in your area. They may include MyTunerRadio and Select your preferred option before moving to the next step.

play your favorite radio station

Use voice commands like, “Alexa, ask to play WFLC 97.3 Florida.”

Alexa will automatically locate this station and start playing it for you.

However, it’s worth noting that in some instances, Alexa may not recognize your preferred radio station and, instead, will tune in to a different station.

As a result, you may find yourself listening to a different station with the same frequency number, call sign, or name. In such a case, you should repeat the process and provide more instructions to Alexa to get the right station.

Alternatively, you can use to find the right frequency or call sign for your station.

Can the Echo and Dot play radio stations?

So, can the Echo Dot play radio stations?

There are a ton of Alexa devices available today, from the Amazon Echo Dot to the Alexa Echo Show with its own dedicated screen. Each solution has its range of unique features to offer, but most can handle simple tasks like playing your favorite music. 

Most Amazon Alexa products can access radio, as you just need to go to the “Skills” section of Alexa. Make sure you check the functionality of the latest Echo products before investing, though.

With Alexa’s help, you can reach as many as 50,000 stations from different countries using one radio app alone.

What radio stations can Alexa play?

The Amazon Alexa radio stations you can access will usually depend on where you are. 

Radio stations on Alexa include things like:

  • myTuner Radio: Support for up to 50,000 free stations from different countries. You’ll also be able to listen to podcasts on the same service. 
  • iHeartRadio: Another radio station supporting thousands of stations for US listeners. You can find guidance on how to link the service here
  • TuneIn: Access to thousands of radio stations around the globe. You’ll be able to access music as well as news reports. However, you will need to pay a fee for live radio access

When you access Alexa’s internet radio skills, you can choose which content you want to listen to from various internet-based companies. 

Can Alexa play local radio?

So, can Alexa play local radio stations?

Crucially, the radio you can access from your Samsung Galaxy or iPhone with Alexa will be limited specifically to which stations have an internet streaming service.

If your local radio stations also broadcast online, and they’re available with applications like TuneIn or myTuner, you should be able to use them. 

Local radio on Alexa is not available through AM/FM radio station connectivity, so you won’t be able to access stations like you would with a normal radio. 

How to add radio stations to Alexa

To access Alexa’s internet radio, you’ll first need to add a “Skill” to your Alexa speaker.

Alexa Skills are the tools or apps the Alexa operating system uses to do certain things. You can find Skills for everything from controlling your smart TV to managing your house lights. 

To access your Skills, visit your Alexa app on Android or iPhone. You’ll have downloaded this app when you first got your Alexa device. 

Go into the menu by tapping the lines in the upper left-hand corner and select “Skills and Games.” From there, you can visit “Categories” and scroll to “Music and Audio”. 

You should find several Skills available for music. Scroll until you find a radio option, or simply tap on the search bar and enter “radio” to find one of the tuners available for Alexa. 

You can then tap on the skill and install it to use the Alexa radio.

Knowing the right voice commands will help you play the radio on Alexa.

How to ask Alexa to play a radio station

Learning to listen to the radio on Alexa isn’t as complex as it seems.

Depending on your local radio’s internet service, you may even be able to ask Alexa to play a station just by saying, “Alexa, play [station name]” and seeing what she can find. This won’t always work, but it’s worth a try if you want to avoid installing Skills.

Installing the Skill options so you have more tuners to choose from will usually be your best bet, however.

Once you have a Skill installed, you can ask Alexa to play a station through one of your services.

For instance, you might say, “Alexa, ask TuneIn to play [radio station].”

When you install your Skills, you’ll usually see a little information on the page advising you on how to work your verbal requests.

How to Play BBC Sounds on Alexa

BBC Sounds is an excellent feature that allows you to listen to podcasts, live radio, broadcasts, and archived shows from the BBC.

So, can you stream BBC Sounds on Alexa?

While you can stream BBC Sounds on Alexa, you need to set up a few things to get started. Here is a step-by-step guide to do that:

  • Step 1: Launch the Alexa app and tap on “More.” Navigate to “Skills & Games” and search for “BBC Sounds” as your preferred Alexa skill.
  • Step 2: Connect Alexa to your BBC account as prompted by the system in step 1 above. If you don’t have an active BBC account, it’s easy to set up one online.
  • Step 3: Tune into your preferred program using voice commands. For instance, you can say, “Alexa, play BBC Radio 4.” You can also pose or stop playing the program by saying, “Alexa, pause or stop.”
  • Step 4: You can forward or rewind an episode by saying, “Alexa, go to the previous episode,” or “Alexa, go to the next episode.” 

How to use Alexa for radio alarms

If you prefer to have Alexa wake you up – rather than relying on your smartphone, you can ask the service to wake you at a specific time after downloading a Skill or using one of the available local stations already connected to Alexa. 

To access the alarm function, say, “Alexa, wake me up with [radio station] at [chosen time].”

Remember, Alexa will need to be connected to your Wi-Fi, or she won’t be able to access the radio. 

The good news is once everything is set up, you can listen to radio for free. So, there’s no need to worry about monthly subscriptions or extra costs. All you need is your internet connection. 

Try some of the following stations to start your Alexa radio journey:

myTuner Radio

Great for international radio stations, myTuner Radio can find all kinds of stations from around the world, including BBC and NPR. There’s also the option to ask for a radio station specializing in a specific genre, like sports or rock. 

Just say, “Alexa, play MyTuner radio rock stations.”

Radio Anchor 

If you’re more interested in news than radio, Anchor will bring you reports from worldwide.

Add the Skill to your Alexa system on your smartphone, and you can even ask Alexa to play specific news stories, like “Alexa, ask Radio anchor to play sports stories.” 

Radio Paradise

This handy radio station Skill is great for parties and events because you can play all kinds of music genres without having to search through endless channels.

Just say, “Alexa, launch Radio Paradise,” and the music will start playing. 

You can also ask Alexa to identify the songs you like. 

Radio Fun Time

A fantastic radio app with tons of classic content and episodic shows, Radio Fun Time, is great if you like listening to older shows.

Just say, “Alexa, open Radio Fun Time” to access the Skill after you’ve added it to Alexa with your smartphone.

What to Do If Alexa Stops Playing Radio

It’s common to experience radio interruptions on Alexa. This can be quite challenging, especially if you’re new to Alexa’s radio functionality. Luckily, there are things you can do to get back on track.

Poor internet connectivity is the main reason why Alexa may stop playing radio on your smart speaker or any other Alexa enabled device.

Therefore, once you notice the smart speaker experiencing an audio dropout, check your WiFi and restore the connection. Here are some of the things you want to do:

  • Check the router’s location: WiFi routers operate optimally when in an open environment where there is nothing obscuring signal transmissions. Therefore, if the router is being blocked by furniture or is locked somewhere, remove it and place it in the open.
  • Upgrade the bandwidth: Most routers operate on 2.4GHz and 5GHz. There is the possibility of the band getting overwhelmed by the connected devices, especially when using the 2.4GHz bandwidth. Therefore, try upgrading to the 5GHz bandwidth to restore the connection.
  • Restart the WiFi router: The router can run out of memory, and when that happens, the system stops functioning. You can solve this by simply rebooting the system. All you have to do is unplug the router from the power supply and wait for at least 30 seconds before plugging it back in.

The above processes should restore your Alexa radio.

And there you have it, everything you need to know about Alexa radio! 

If you’re a fan of the radio aesthetic with the added power of the internet, you can check out our list of the 10 Best Internet Radios!

Or, if you’re in the market for a handy radio, here are the 8 Features To Look For In The Best Portable Radios.

Radio Fidelity: For the love of radio.

Just so you know… This article contains affiliate links. The commission we earn helps to cover our costs, and comes at no additional cost to you. For more information on our affiliate program, please refer to our disclosure policy.

Similar Posts