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Livio demonstrates FM Connect Web-connected FM radio tech

You may not think much about how you interact with your local FM radio broadcasters, but Livio is working to make it easier.

Livio Connect demo
Livio's FM Connect is still in the testing phase, which is why it looks a bit like a science project. Antuan Goodwin/CNET

LAS VEGAS--Livio, a company that has made a name making it easier and safer to interface with the apps on your phone, is now working to make it easier and safer for drivers to interact with your favorite terrestrial radio stations, and has announced that it is developing a new technology called FM Connect.

While listening to a Livio Connect-enabled FM radio that is paired via Bluetooth to a smartphone running the Livio app, users gain the ability to communicate with the broadcaster or access rich data at the touch of a connect button.

Livio wants its app to be a one-stop shop for car-to-app connectivity. Antuan Goodwin/CNET

For example, if an advertisement for a popular steak house plays over the air, users may be able to tap a button on the radio to initiate Google Navigation or call for a reservation. If a morning show is running a contest for show tickets, the driver may be able to simply tap a button to be entered to win without looking away from the road. Tapping the button while a song or news story is playing could tag the song for later purchase or bookmark an article for reading later. The action dictated by the FM Connect is still wide open and will be customizable by the broadcaster and the smartphone running the Livio Connect app.

Livio's demonstration of this FM Connect technology comes alongside the developer's 2013 CES announcement of new application partners (Accuweather, Inrix, and Parkopedia) joining its existing network and that it would be offering a new "freemium" service level for app developers to encourage the adoption of the Livio Connect app/hardware integration API.