When it was introduced by Clear Channel Communications in 2008, the iHeartRadio app had a humble job as an online outlet for the radio giant’s 800-plus stations.
Now iHeartRadio has become such a central part of Clear Channel’s efforts to remake itself as a multiplatform media company that “iHeart” has become the new identity of the entire operation.
On Tuesday, Clear Channel — by far the largest operator of radio stations in the United States — will rename itself iHeartMedia, in recognition of what Robert W. Pittman, the company’s chief executive, says is how thoroughly the iHeartRadio franchise has become incorporated into virtually everything Clear Channel does.
As Clear Channel’s all-purpose audio brand, the iHeartRadio name is attached to a new awards show and multiple live events around the country. Those events include the annual iHeartRadio Music Festival, which returns to Las Vegas for a fourth time on Friday and Saturday, with performances by Taylor Swift, Coldplay, One Direction, Iggy Azalea and many other pop acts eager to curry favor with the country’s most powerful broadcaster.