T-Mobile Galaxy S7 and S7 edge gain FM radio functionality with latest updates

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UPDATE: T-Mobile has updated its GS7 and GS7 edge support pages to include this latest update, which it says also adds a Power and Volume key fix and “various system improvements.”

 

A couple of days after T-Mobile posted info about new Galaxy S7 and S7 edge updates that don’t seem to have actually rolled out, the two Samsung flagships have actually started to receive software updates, and they add a major new feature to the S7 phones.

The T-Mobile Galaxy S7 and S7 edge are gaining FM radio support today. Updates are rolling out to both phones that weigh in at around 164MB, and in addition to FM radio support, they add Android’s May security update.

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These updates make no mention of the Power and Volume keys bug fix that was supposedly included in the updates that T-Mobile announced and then pulled earlier this week. However, today’s updates are the same size as those were supposed to be, so it’s possible that the fix could be in here. We’ll have to wait for T-Mobile’s official update support pages to go live to see if they mention the fix.

As for the FM radio activation, it’s good to see T-Mobile getting around to enabling that feature on its Galaxy S7 and S7 edge. T-Mo committed to supporting FM radio chips in its phones last year. FM radio gives you access to your local radio stations for free music, and NextRadio — maker of an FM radio app that you S7 and S7 edge owners can try out right here — says that FM radio uses three times less battery power than streaming music apps.

Have you gotten this update on your Galaxy S7 or S7 edge? If so, how’s the FM radio support working for you?

Thanks Brad, Ivory, and Matt!

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  • Philip

    I always hear my local radio thru Tunein. It sounds so much better (CD quality) than OTA FM even when I am local. Did you notice this?

    • kgraham182

      FM is far from CD quality, rather you get it OTA or through an app.

    • ObsceneJesster

      The only time you won’t hear your local FM stations in real time is when they are broadcasting a sporting event such as MLB and NFL. They don’t have the rights to broadcast the game to the web version of their station so that’s where the FM radio really shines.

  • Joe

    Used the app linked in the story. Really don’t like the fact it won’t play unless you have headphones plugged in. But it works and I can change channels just like a FM radio. No data being transferred. I wondered when Tmobile was going to do this since this would help with less data being used on their towers which means more bandwidth for everyone else. With Music Freedom, I really didn’t see the need to block FM radios.

    • Kurt Schultz

      The headphones are the antenna

      • Joe

        Should still let people play the station without them. So what if it’s mostly static. Shouldn’t force people to use them.

        • Brian

          No really, you would not get any signal without headphones. No antenna=no music.

        • MastarPete

          Without headphones or a built in antenna the only thing you will hear IS static. The fact that you need to plug in headphones should tell you that the phone does NOT have a built in antenna for FM radio reception.

          You’d have to be standing right next to the station’s broadcast antenna to hear anything. At which point you’re relying on the stations transmission power to brute force activation of your phone’s FM tuner.

          Radio waves require antennas that are appropriately sized for the frequency you are trying to tune into. The higher the frequency the shorter the antenna needs to be and the lower the frequency the longer the antenna needs to be. A full wave antenna for reception of US FM radio is around 11 feet long.

          Compare that to the full wave antenna lengths for the radio frequencies cell networks typically operate on..
          700mhz ~ 16.86 inches
          800mhz ~ 14.76 inches
          1700mhz ~ 6.94 inches
          1900mhz ~ 6.21 inches
          2100mhz ~ 5.62 inches

      • Alex Rud

        Too bad no bluetooth

  • ED

    Any news when s6 or s6 edge will also have fm functionality

  • Vic Vee

    Just got it an hour ago worked great except for how I wanted to use it. I want headphones plugged in because you have to for antenna but I want audio coming out of Bluetooth. After many years there’s still no solution to this…

    • The-Sailor-Man

      Just buy one jack. Or just cut old one. Only jack.
      Plug it in, and you are ready to go.
      No need of earbuds

  • Rafael

    No one has mentioned the fact that it does bring the May android security update.

    • queenren

      Yes! Thanks for adding this! I think this is important enough to be added to the article!

    • Alex Wagner

      I do mention that the update improves security, but I’ll update the wording to specifically mention the May security update.

  • rgao007

    This is awesome!

  • Philip

    I just update. Where is the FM app? The annoying SD Msg still show up after a cold boot. Luckly seldom do cold boot.

    • Daniel

      You have to download the “Next radio” app.

  • Brad

    STILL no update to fix the do not disturb scheduling feature? This is terrible and should have been included in this update.

    • nearvanaman

      Hi – what is this bug?

      • Brad

        If you go to Settings>Sound and Vibration>Do Not Disturb I get an “Unfortunately, Settings has stopped” pop-up. There was a thread on Android Central of others experiencing this same issue on various carriers.

        • nearvanaman

          Thanks Brad. I was thinking of picking up the s7 Edge. I’ll review the threads. Thanks again.

        • Uday

          It does not happen to me, Try cache clear once or reset factory.

        • Mike

          Did you restore your phone from a backup or upgrade to the OS? If so clear cache or clear the app data

    • calcu007

      Well, I dont have problem with that feature. Had you try to clear phone cache/?

  • Uday

    I can see the following changes
    1. Finally, the SD Card notification bug is gone.
    2. Accidental touches on edges are no more a problem.

    Have to see what FM Radio is all about. But its a completely useless crap.

    • Alex Rud

      That is very cool. Love to listen to espn radio for games or their talk shows and also NPR. I am waiting for the Note 6 (currently have note 5).

    • Philip

      I still see the SD card notification. Where is the FM radio app? I cant find it.

      • calcu007

        YOu can download nextRadio app

      • Uday

        Not sure about your problem. I got 2 S7 Edge. Both of them got fixed on SD Card notification bug. Try reset factory.

        • Jimmy James

          No. Not true. I have apps installed to my SD card, so this might be the issue why it still shows up for me. Not a big deal, I just hit clear notifications and it’s gone.

  • mreveryphone

    Got my first shout out for submitting info!!! Thanks Alex!

  • René Marquardt

    Not hating the idea of FM radio per se, I just don’t see when I’d be actually using it. When I’m streaming music, I’m streaming it to my car stereo, which comes equipped with an FM radio. The reason I am streaming music to my car stereo in first place, listening to FM radio for more than 12 minutes is torture.

    • mreveryphone

      Torture indeed… xm/sirius is my remedy…

      • Philip

        Tunein is better. Free and thousands of radio stations, some are commercial free. There are adults joke channels on there too. I listen to CNN on it.

        • mreveryphone

          There are some stations I really like on there and can’t get on tunein so that’s why I keep it. I listen to tunein while at work…

    • Philip

      I have unlimited data and the sound coming out of Tunein sounds so much better than OTA FM.

      • Mike

        Well I work for a big 3 automobile company and no carrier works well on the line so fm radio and sirius is a big deal.

      • Jimmy James

        Most local stations run on a couple minute delay or longer on Tunein radio.

    • MattPortland

      That’s fine and all, but give credit where credit is due. The chip was already in the phone and T-Mobile just activated it. You don’t have to use it. Some people will and some people won’t. It’s pretty cool that they activated it when no other US carrier has as of yet.

  • Junior Rosario

    Have I not noticed this before but this update seems to have brought Flash notifications with the camera LED as well….

    • BreakThaLawFTP

      They been had this out the box…

      • Junior Rosario

        Did not know this.

      • Junior Rosario

        Did not know this…..but thanks for clarifying.

  • Joe

    Any other app besides TuneRadio that can do FM chip? TuneRadio won’t do bluetooth which is a serious limitation.

    • Giancarlo Pereira

      That’s because it is necessary earbuds plugged in as the antenna uses the plug.

      • Joe

        Ok but at least they could let the station still try to play without them. TuneRadio won’t even let the station play without something plugged into the headphone jack. I don’t care if it’s static. Why would they limit it?

        • Mike

          Every phone with fm radio in the past used headphones it’s required for the antenna

        • Joe

          You’re not reading what I’m typing. Have to repeat myself. Why limit the radio if you don’t have headphones plugged in? Why can’t I use the app without anything plugged in? If it’s static I don’t care. Forcing people to plug in headphones to use the app is stupid. The app should remove that limitation.

        • Mike

          Your not reading the headphones are used as antennas for the fm chip to work on the phone

        • Joe

          Yet again I don’t care if stations come in static. The app places a hold on using it if you don’t have headphones plugged in. It should not do this. It should still let you use the app .. it’s just the stations won’t come in clear. Again I understand the headphones are used for the antenna. I do not care about the antenna but the app won’t let me in without something plugged in and I want an app that doesn’t have this limitation. How many times do I need to type this out? Please don’t reply with the same thing again saying the app needs an antenna.

        • Mike

          If you want fm stations without the fm chip and instead uses data use the radio app but remind you it doesn’t have every local fm channel . Tuneinradio is using the fm chip and your earplugs for the antenna… No it will not work in airplane mode since the FM chip can Interfere with a plane .

        • Joe

          Nevermind you seem to not understand this whole conversation. I’m done here.

        • Mike

          Your the one who doesn’t it . Do you expect your car to run without gas or a battery?

        • Adam Zawacki

          Mike, are you slow? Ignoring his question, I use my radio in my car, but i disabled my antenna in the down position so it wont wear out the antenna motor. I still receive radio stations. Sometimes more static, but i dont care, Dont ignore his question beause you dont see the logic in what he wants.

        • Jimmy James

          I know. I hate how if I want to do use apps with the screen locked, I should be able to. Why do they put this limitation? Voice control has been around since the 90s.

        • Mike

          Your car still has an power antenna? That’s the real question

        • Jimmy James

          What? Are you dumb? People should be able to watch a big screen TV without it being plugged into a power outlet. There shouldn’t be the limitation that I need power.

        • Mike

          Are you slow?

        • Jimmy James

          I’m on your side.

        • Jimmy James

          I know right. Wanting to be able to control apps with the screen
          locked is not hard to understand.

        • Jimmy James

          I agree again. Apps place a hold on the app if you have your screen locked. I want apps to not have this limitation!

        • Jimmy James

          I agree. Forcing people to have their screen unlocked is stupid. All apps should be voice command. The apps should remove this limitation.

        • Jimmy James

          I agree. I want apps that don’t force me to have to have my screen unlocked to use them. They must add a voice command feature.

  • guest

    Will the T-Mobile S7 and S7 Edge get the Display Scaling update anytime soon?

    • Junior Rosario

      Scaling display is available now….if you do a workaround……it is a nifty trick.

      • BreakThaLawFTP

        What is this sorcery you speak of?!

        • Junior Rosario

          No Sorcery…..there is a procedure in which you install Nova launcher do some steps then pull the display scaling setting out to the desktop then choose CONDENSED OR STANDARD display…..Best of all, the procedure has to be done only once…..google it…it’s super easy.

        • erikdrakon

          I guess i didn’t elaborate on my previous questions no need to install nova to get that feature there’s been an app out for a while now, I had it on my note 4 before i upgraded here’s the link for it. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.evozi.displayscaling

    • erikdrakon

      what display scaling are you talking about?

  • iCrap

    google music updated a while back, and it fixed the microsd issue (google music wouldn’t detect the card). updated the s7 edge this morning, and surprise! the sd card issue is back! still has poor ram management as well.

  • Joe Chudicek

    Any word on when this will happen with the LG G5?

  • The-Sailor-Man

    For those that complain that needs earbuds plugged:
    Just buy one jack. Or just cut old one. Only jack.
    Plug it in, and you are ready to go.
    No need of earbuds set.

  • Jefski

    How is it a true FM radio?I put phone on airplane mode and the next radio app stops and gives error that I’m using airplane mode.turn airplane mode off to use FM radio. With that being the case you need to use your data

    • The-Sailor-Man

      ?????LOL
      Try again.

    • VN

      Try with a different FM radio app, maybe one that doesn’t need the ‘full network access’ permission.

      To search apps without permissions, I search, for example: flashlight no permissions.

    • Jimmy James

      Next radio pulls pictures and station information from the net for a nicer radio experience. Use a different FM app.

  • Phil

    Damn so much negtive chat about chip being activated.
    Device has it on board great job tmobile making feature avalible.

  • LaShona

    My FM radio works great. SD card notification still came up.

  • riverhorse

    I want an OTA that stretches phone past 6″.

  • Camilo

    I updated yesterday, but I can’t use the radio. I can’t install NextRadio because it says “This app is not available on your country”. Every other app works with internet :'(.

  • jtothada

    I can’t believe the S7Edge isn’t 0 down Anymore

    • Joe

      It was never zero down. The non-edge version was zero down.

      • Brian Richards

        It was 0 down during the pre-order period and that was about it. On launch day there was a down payment.

  • Johnny Cortes

    My apps won’t read from sd card now!!! -_-

  • Anthony Cardell

    Just updated. From the batt, I’ve noticed issue with the stock “Messages” SMS app. The chat bubbles and font size default to a smaller size. When you pinch and zoom to the size you want and then exit and go back in…it defaults to the same smaller size….very annoying…it never did this before. Can someone please verify if you’re experiencing this also or know a fix? Also battery appears to be draining RAPIDLY. Anyone else??

    • Anthony Cardell

      Anyone?????

      • It’s like erik said. Go into your messaging app, click on More in the upper right on the screen .. select Font Size. you have to select Off for the default to device size option and then set the size you want.

    • erikdrakon

      when you open the messaging app, select more>font size. Its set by default to your system font size the pinch to zoom only works for that moment once you exit and re-enter the app it goes back like its supposed to. and as for battery no problems here

  • Bob Brown

    Motorola & TMO, please enable the FM chip for the Moto X Pure, 2nd Edition 2015!!….Sorry, I now understand that Moto did NOT include an FM chip in the Moto X Pure, 2nd edition 2015. Why not? Not sure, since the Pure is certainly not a budget smartphone…
    I will not be considering Moto for my next phone because of this….

  • It already came with a built-in FM signal receiver and they sure took a long time to activate it…better late than never, I guess. It saves a lot of data and battery while travelling. I was hoping to see the volume key bug fixes as well, but let’s wait and see how long that will take to roll out.