NPR’s channel, which should be live today, will offer a free stream, 24 hours a day, which mixes live news with segments from pre-recorded shows like “All Things Considered” and “The Diane Rehm Show.” NPR officials say that within weeks, some of the broadcaster’s local stations should begin offering their own channels, with a similar mix of live and taped news.
NPR already attracts 30 million visitors a month to its free Web and mobile apps. VP of Digital Media Zach Brand says, "The public radio audience is very digital savvy, but there are certainly some of the millennials and other folks who are looking for their listening experience exclusively on digital, so we want to reach them wherever they are."
It's unclear what business relationship Apple has with NPR, since it is a nonprofit organization. “I would say that Apple has been very understanding of the business model and the connection that public radio has with their audience,” Brand said.
iTunes Radio recently overtook Spotify to become the third most popular music streaming service in the United States and there are rumors that Apple will make it a standalone app.