The first-ever ABU RadioSonic, re-branded from ABU RadioAsia, brought together more than 100 radio and audio content makers from across our region and around the world, including 19 speakers from 15 countries, to share experiences, showcase new content initiatives and workshop solutions to common challenges. The re-branding reflected the innovation, evolution and flux in the Radio and Audio industries. RadioSonic showcased innovative content models, featured specialist panels, presentations and workshops led by ABU members and media experts.

The event started with a video greeting montage of 12 ABU Radio members from across our vast region, welcoming delegates to the first edition of the new initiative. The highlight of the day was a presentation from the Chief Strategy Officer of Futuri Media and creator of RadioGPT, Tracy Gilliam, titled “Is AI our Future”. Tracy led the delegates on a journey of what Radio would look like in the not too distant future and said companies that haven’t incorporated AI into their operating strategies by 2030 will be next to extinct.

The program continued with Nazri Noran, CEO of Media Prima Audio Malaysia, Hamit Yaz, Director of Radio TRT Turkey and Francis Herman CEO of VBTC Vanuatu outlining the challenges and opportunities of Radio in the Asia-Pacific region. A number of content showcases were presented, featuring NHK’s Earth Radio, RTM Malaysia’s Spooky Tales, VOV Vietnam’s Indigenous Programming initiative, as well as a focus on Diversity from ROR Romania, Radio Mewat, India and RTM Malaysia. To round off the morning, the Radio Innovations showcase featured the latest AI, Cloud and App solutions from RCS and Triton Digital.

The afternoon started with an interactive presentation of NHK’s ABU Prizes 2020 Winning Radio Drama “The Days of Depression – A Shogi Master’s Invisible Opponent” and finished with a deep dive into the world of Podcasting, with an overview of podcast content production in Asia from Singapore’s 1Up Media, followed by a strategic overview of ‘How to become a podcast network when all you have is radio content’ from ABC Radio Australia.

The day ended on a high with a very dynamic ‘Fake or Fact’ workshops by SMART India, which was designed to help producers and audiences distinguish between fact, opinion and deliberately fake content.