Wow that is pretty cheap. I really don't understand how they can do it for $200 a year. I've priced a lot of bandwidth for corporate use and for unlimited bandwidth at Gbps speeds is thousands per month.
Depends on the country. In the US there is the 5th amendment that allows a defendant the right to not incriminate themselves. In other countries you can be fined and sent to jail, however, the defendant can still decide if the contempt of court penalty is worse than the penalty they might face when the encrypted information is found to be incriminating of a more serious crime.
Small private stations are at a disadvantage because unlike the larger stations they can't afford to stream online. The tremendous bandwidth required to stream to thousands of listeners is cost prohibitive for small stations. Unfortunately the small stations are often the better ones.
The station can choose to use either an omni-directional antenna or a directional antenna. With directional you can direct all the wattage toward your audience as is the case in my small town in Panama. The antenna is high on the hill and points towards town. With omni you get less distance because power is distributed in all directions. I was also under the impression that all RF is line of sight although it can to some degree be reflected off of planer surfaces and...
That makes sense, however, I personally can't stand to listen to any pops or hiss. I can't imagine that swinging an antenna around wouldn't produce some audio artifacts. I suppose it all depends on how strong the signal is to start with. For the station that I like I need an expensive powered antenna connected to my home stereo. I can't get it satisfactorily with the radio in my car.
FM is basically line of sight. With such a tiny antenna inside a phone, you would not be able to pick up most stations with the quality you would want, especially for music, except the ones with 5000+ watt transmitters, and then you'll be listening to non-stop ads.
I was in Best Buy this weekend to get a headphone adapter and I walked by the self serve watch area. What a disaster. There were watches all over the place in piles. Some on the table, some on the back of the display area. Every shape color and configuration you could imagine but they all looked like cheap junk. Absolutely no comparison to Apple Store where two or three attendants were continuously cleaning the display cases.