I've been annoyed by the lack of FM radio on my phone for years now. My Samsung Omnia and Motorola Droid X on Verizon had the basic FM radio (not HD), but my Samsung Note 2 and Note 4 on Verizon do not have a working FM radio. The same phone on Sprint has the radio, and they even advertise it with the NextRadio app. I've seen an HTC M8 with a working FM radio on Verizon. I could have switched to the M8, or maybe it's time to try Sprint, since I had a recent bad sales experience with Verizon.
I've asked about this in forums, and one explanation was that the carrier and manufacturer must pay licensing and spectrum testing fees to the FCC. Some carriers and some manufacturers won't pay the additional cost for the FM radio testing. Another explanation is that HTC left the hooks intact, but removed the radio app, and Samsung actually removed the hooks to the FM radio on Verizon phones, but not in Sprint phones. Maybe it was at the request of Verizon, to force users into streaming radio. Customer service doesn't seem to know anything about this, some don't even know the difference between FM radio and streaming.
I've heard that HD is proprietary and manufacturers don't want to pay licensing. It would be nice to have some kind of digital broadcast available, like they have in Norway. Plain old FM radio at least.
Another argument is that it's not worth the effort since radio listeners are declining. They could leave the FM tuner working and let the owner decide to use it or not. If you don't like it, don't listen. I listen quite a bit, by carrying around a small Insignia HD. A few years ago I won so much stuff on the radio that they sent me a W-2 form, which included $2,404 in cash prizes.
This was discussed on NPR last year: