This is a question we are frequently asked and a question which a lot of people are asking when looking for their own Internet radio broadcast solution.  Well, we think it is great but you could accuse us of being a little biased and we would have to agree with you.

Firstly, I would like to expand on SAM Broadcaster.  There are many flavours of SAM Broadcaster, there is SAM Broadcaster Lite which does not have all of the features found in other versions of SAM Broadcaster and is included freely with any CheapestStream package, we have SAM Broadcaster Live-DJ which has all of the features of SAM Broadcaster Pro but can only stream to the SAM Broadcaster Cloud service with which it is associated.  SAM Broadcaster Pro has been the leading choice for Internet broadcasters for well over 10 years and there is SAM Broadcaster Studio which is also licensed to stream a traditional radio signal.

I have recently been having a forum discussion with a group of long-time SAM Broadcaster users who were asking whether SAM Broadcaster Pro was still under mainstream development.  I assured them it was but to be honest, we believe SAM Broadcaster Pro contains all of the features required to run a professional Internet radio station and then some!  We readily accept feature requests from customers and where possible, we try to incorporate these features.  We have a long and rich road map planned for SAM Broadcaster Pro but it would also be fair to say that this discussion did lead to a number of great suggestions, some of which we are planning to incorporate in future releases but as mentioned, SAM Broadcaster does already include all of the features you would need to start Internet radio broadcasting.

So when we are asked “SAM Broadcaster, how good is it?”  We believe it is one of the best solutions available.  It includes features you might usually find with broadcast solutions costing thousands of dollars and whilst there are free solutions available, SAM Broadcaster Pro would not have been the leading solution if it was not any good.

I would be amiss if I did not briefly cover some of the free alternatives available.  I could be wrong but I cannot think of a free solution which includes all of the features you will find in SAM Broadcaster, straight out of the box and which can be used commercially.  There are free encoder options, free DJ options, there are even free solutions which DJ and encode but these can only be used for non-commercial purposes.  I cannot think of one free solution which does it all but I will happily stand corrected.

Some solutions do not include the encoder tools but these can be added if used non-commercially.  Other solutions cannot use technologies like MP3 in a commercial setting.  The reason for this is simple; to provide all of these features in a simple software solution which is licensed for commercial usage requires the appropriate licenses from the technology owners and these are not free.  You can use some of these technologies for personal use without the need for licenses, you can make use of a fixed-date trial of these technologies in a commercial environment but you just cannot use all of these technologies in a commercial environment if the software is free.  Starting your first Internet radio station can be a daunting task and if you selected a solution because it was free and then find you have to install a separate database, add encoders or locate other components before you can start streaming then you might find the free solution is more off-putting than a paid-for solution which works right out-of-the-box.

SAM Broadcaster Pro does all of this, right out-of-the-box, all you need is a streaming service and your station comes to life.

If you want to run your very own Internet radio station but are worried about having to be connected to the Internet and streaming 24/7, then Spacial has a solution for you; SAM Broadcaster Cloud.  As the name suggests, this is hosted in the Cloud on our servers, you simply upload some of your music library, drop some tracks in the queue and switch your station to On-Air.  It really is as simple as this but to make this even simpler; we provide a selection of royalty-free tracks which are already playing when you first log in.  As you become more comfortable with the features you can start configuring your scheduling and broadcast live with the included SAM Broadcaster Live-DJ software.  Feeling braver?  Why not invite some of your friends to DJ on your station with the 5 additional SAM Broadcaster Live-DJ licenses included.  By adding some of the customizable players to your website your listener-base can start to grow.  Adding some of the included web widgets enables your listeners to start interacting with your station by browsing your music library, make requests or even dedicate some tracks.  If things really take off you might like to add a second or third station to your service.  This is simple to do and the best bit is all of your stations on a single service can share a common music library, you only have to upload your tracks once and they can be shared by up to 50 of your own stations.  No wonder SAM Broadcaster Cloud is fast becoming the solution of choice for Internet radio stations as well as in-store music service providers.

There are unfortunately, a very small number of previous customers who now seem to spend a lot of time criticizing everything we do and turning legitimate customer issues into marketing gimmicks to help them promote alternative solutions.  We are open and admit that like any other software business, customers will have enquiries, problems and complaints, but we can assure you that we are committed to resolving all customer enquiries as swiftly as possible.

We respond to every customer comment or problem, whether it is through social media, email or support request but we cannot publicly respond to issues which may have been taken out of context by third-parties as we wish to respect the privacy of our customers.  With the best will in the world, a customer posting on social media might be mistaken and we will happily clarify the matter in private without a public response, even when the issue has been taken out of context by a detractor, and even if the detractor has previously applied to be a Spacial Affiliate…

So if you find yourself asking the question, “SAM Broadcaster, how good is it?”  Why not find out for yourself with a free, 7-day trial of SAM Broadcaster Cloud or a free 14-day trial of SAM Broadcaster Pro.  If you have any questions or have a specific requirement, reach out to us either through our helpdesk at http://support.spacial.com or for specific sales inquiries, drop us a line at sales@spacial.com. We will be happy to assist you.