iHub Radio, which launched three years ago as the only local online chat radio platform in Coachella Valley, is relaunching as Radio111. The platform will include a range of local programs from new and long-time hosts and will launch its fall season on September 25.
Radio111 co-founder and chief content director John McMullen said the new brand would better reflect the direction of the Coachella Valley platform.
“Most people don’t know what the iHub is,” McMullen said. “The new identity is something (which can resonate with) almost everyone here.”
iHub, short for Innovation Hub, is a business incubator and accelerator program run by the Coachella Valley Economic Partnership with sites in Palm Springs, Palm Desert, and Indio. iHub Radio debuted there in May 2018 and took its name from the program.
Radio111 will see the return of several hosts from the early days of iHub Radio, including Jay Alvarez, who hosted a lunchtime show with his late father Marvin Alvarez on iHub from 2018 through early 2020. Alvarez will host a show called “Your Best Life “airs Mondays from 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. focusing on inspirational content related to the positive mindset.
The station will also feature new hosts and shows such as former State Senate hopeful Joy Silver, who will speak about “progressive issues and policies” and activism on a show called “Outspoken!” “
Other topics on the Radio111 program span the gamut from cannabis, cars and fantasy football to LGBTQ + issues.
The platform will feature interviews with local Coachella Valley reporters from media such as The Desert Sun, one of its partners, discussing issues such as crime, business and the environment.
“We’re digging into the topics a lot more than the TV news can,” McMullen said.
The Radio111 co-founder said the platform’s main selling point to potential listeners, as well as advertisers, is its local focus.
“It’s that we are local. Period,” he said. “I know it sounds cliché, but it’s real… I didn’t want to be the babysitter of a satellite radio station.”
McMullen, who has spent decades in the radio industry, said a full list of truly locally produced content is scarce in a market of any size.
“Our opportunity is to be accessible to our neighbors and that’s what sets us apart from any other chat station that enters this market,” he said.
Radio111 is available to stream for free through its website at Radio111.com, using the TuneIn Radio app from any phone or smart device, or through digital in-dash systems such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
James B. Cutchin covers business in the Coachella Valley. Contact him at email@example.com.