Posted by Jeff Scott on September 18th, 2013 + Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Slacker has redesigned their iOS app to better fit with iOS 7. Included is a whole new design focused on making navigation of their millions of songs faster and more intuitive. A new feature called My Vibe allows users to find songs that fit any mood or event quickly and easily from a list of playlists hand-curated by Slacker Radio music programmers.
Posted by Rob Rich on September 9th, 2013 iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Being able to listen to whatever we want via free radio apps like iHeartRadio is great, but sometimes it’s nice to take a break from awkwardly singing along with Justin Bieber in the car or on the bus. That’s why Clear Channel is updating their app with more Talk content. Users will be able to add several news, entertainment, and other sorts of radio talk shows to their playlists – including segments from ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and “The View.”
Alongside the increased Talk love comes a couple of minor (but significant) interface updates. An easier-to-navigate pull out screen can be used for quick access to presets and saved favorites, and it’s now possible to browse by category.
Posted by Jeff Scott on September 10th, 2012 + Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
One of the original radio and podcast apps, Stitcher, has finally added offline listening. With the Stitcher update that was just released you can mark any of your custom stations to allow you to listen to them offline. A great way to ensure you do not go over on your cellphone data plan.
Plenty of drivers have already discovered how integrating their smartphones with their cars can lead to better driving experiences. This fall, Honda owners will get to try out a new kind of connectivity system called HondaLink. Combined with the Aha Radio app, HondaLink looks to give users a fresh way to enjoy their content on the road.
Aha Radio seems to work like an audio version of Flipboard. Users feed the app with their various personalized media sources like songs, radio stations, audiobooks, podcasts, and social networking sites and are then presented with a custom audio stream for them to listen to while driving. Users can also monitor traffic conditions as well as search for directions to restaurants and other local hotspots. All of this is done through the hands-free voice recognition controls, steering-wheel controls, and in-dash controls that HondaLink provides. That way, users can stay safely connected without even touching their phones.
HondaLink arrives this fall with the 2013 Honda Accord. Meanwhile, the Aha Radio app is available now for free on the App Store.
Stitcher Radio, the on-demand talk radio service, has just been updated with several new features. Back in April of last year, 148Apps’ Blake Grundman called Stitcher Radio “music to our ears” and stated that “Stitcher may be the cure for the common podcast.” Now the popular radio service will include some great new features including a personal recommendation service.
Users will create a Stitcher Smart Station to receive personalized recommendations out of the 10,000+ shows available on Stitcher. According to statistics taken from the app, average listeners discover five new shows within their first month of using the service. Stitcher Smart Station is an easy to use way to get recommendations for those new shows. The recommendations take into account the listeners’ history, favorite shows, and thumbs ups.
Other features included in the new update are lock screen album art (like the Music app, listeners will see the shows cover art on the lockscreen), a sleep timer, and the ability to share shows over Twitter easier.
Stitcher Radio is a free app. With these new updates, Stitcher may be the ultimate replacement to traditional car radio.
Regular users of the Spotify app have just been given yet another reason why the service is the best music product out there. Radio functionality has just been added in the latest update.
It’s a feature that’s been available for PC/Mac users for quite a while and allows users to create stations based on their favorite artists, albums or playlists, with only a single tap saving the track for future reference.
For those who want faster access, the Radio tab makes it possible to view and listen to other stations. Give a favored song a thumb up and it all goes towards Spotify’s personalization system which recommends ideal stations for the user. It should ensure that there’s never a time where you’ll be stumped for what to listen to next.
The service is currently available for free in the US while other countries will require a premium subscription to access the functionality.
Tivoli Audio has just released an iPhone app, Tivoli Radio, for listening to high quality radio stations chosen by the listeners of their popular audio equipment.
Tivoli Audio’s first app, Tivoli Radio, includes an interface based on their most popular selling radio, the Model One table radio. Users can listen to a select number of stations from around the world that were the most popular stations among their customers. The app includes 10 genres with 10 stations in each of those genres. A “Tivoli’s Favorites” category is also included.
Tivoli Audio is a multimedia speaker and hifi equipment manufacturer with a wide variety of products including table radios, iPod players, Hi-Fi Systems, portables, and accessories. Tivoli Audio aims to provide high quality audio equipment to consumers at affordable prices.
Tivoli Radio is a free app so it can’t hurt to download it and take a look at the Tivoli Audio-curated list of free internet radio stations.
What happens when a location-based service like Foursquare and a radio streaming services like Pandora are mashed together? We end up with something like WahWah.FM. WahWah.FM, a German-based start-up, is a music service that lets users create their own radio stations by picking music on their own iPhones and simultaneously listening and streaming those songs to anyone else who’d like to listen.
Unlike Pandora and other services that may use algorithms and recommendations to pick songs for stations, every user is their own DJ and can choose which songs they will listen to and broadcast to their listeners. Users can tune into to other users all over to world to check out what they’re listening to. Stations can be posted to Facebook to let friends know that music is being broadcasted. And there are even ways to interact with the listens to the stations each user has created.
WahWah.FM is a free service and is now available on the App Store. Check it out and start streaming.
Frisky, the electronic music internet radio station, is now available on iOS with an eponymous app. Frisky comes with two distinct flavors of stations to listen to: Frisky and Chill. Frisky is for high-energy dance music, boasting the same shows from the DJs scheduled on the Frisky website. Chill is programmed to slow things down, keep things cool with ambient and lounge music with some movie scores mixed in. The Chill station is an extension of their ChilloutSundays programming, except as a 24/7 station, and it’s currently only exclusively available through the app.
Each station changes the interface’s appearance slightly, with even the volume slider matching the color scheme for the station: warm pink for Frisky, and cool blue for Chill. A simple swipe of the finger switches stations. Frisky supports 128 kbps MP3 and AAC streams, along with a 48k AAC stream for listening over cellular networks without taking up too much data. Listening status can be shared via Twitter, Facebook, and email. Best of all, the app has launched for free.
5by5, the digital network that purports itself to be for “geeks, designers, broadcasters, and entrepreneurs” has launched a new iOS app that lets listeners check out their various shows while on the go. Shows such as Mac Power Users, which is exactly what it says on the tin, and The Cocktail Napkin, a show about inspiration and the ideas that come from them are now streamable through the app. For those that want to listen to the shows as they record live, the app offers push notifications to find out when they start broadcasting. The app supports background audio, and supports AirPlay for playing shows on remote speakers. The episode also features a schedule of upcoming broadcasts, integration with the 5by5 newsletter, and the ability to see how many other people are listening live to the app. Note that it is not a universal app – at least not at the moment.
Swann, a global leader in security monitoring systems, and also a producer of many remote controlled (RC) helicopter models, has just announced the addition of a new RC helicopter to its fleet that can be controlled via an iOS device. The i-Fly Micro Lightning is an RC helicopter that can be controlled by iOS devices through Swann’s free iFly app and an adapter that fits into the device’s audio jack. The user can control the i-Fly Micro Lighting with on-screen touch controls or by tilting their device in tilt mode. There is also a 3-way infrared control included to control without an iOS device. The little helicopter charges via USB and will fly for up to 8 minutes on a full charge.
The i-Fly Micro Lightning will retail for $69.99, and will be available from Fry’s Electronics, BrandSmart, and other major retailers. The free iFly app is available for download form the Apple App Store and is compatible with iPhone, iPod, and iPad devices running iOS 3.0 or later.
It’s refreshing to see increasing numbers of radio stations offer their own official apps so that iOS users can easily listen to music stations wherever they are. The latest to implement such an app is that of Radio Volum, a Norwegian based radio station that focuses on EDM (Electronic Dance Music). Broadcasting live 24/7, it offers the best in Trance, House, Dance and Progressive music.
The freely available universal app allows users to tune in live, read the latest news from the official website, track the station’s Twitter feeds and Facebook page, listen to exclusive Mixtapes and watch the latest YouTube videos too.
Multitasking support is available so that users can carry on with other tasks on their iOS devices while listening to the latest dance music.
Radio Volum should provide exactly what dance fans could want from a music app. It’s available now and it’s free.
Southern Californians and music fans alike should instantly recognise the name KCRW. It’s a public radio station that’s become increasingly popular thanks to its use of modern methods like podcasts and streaming Internet radio broadcasts in its efforts to educate music fans in the latest and greatest new acts. In the past, KCRW hosts have helped showcase the likes of Beck, Adele, Florence & the Machine, Coldplay, Dido and Massive Attack.
Now there’s an app from KCRW that aims to take ‘listeners on an audio adventure of artists especially selected by DJs’ from the station. Pretty exciting, huh?
KCRW Music Mine – an iPad only app – is dedicated entirely to music exploration using The Echo Nest’s music intelligence platform to track down the best new artists. The app offers up to 100 artists at a time with lists updated daily in tandem with the on air playlists for KCRW. Listeners who want to learn more can then find videos, photos, blog posts and more behind each artist as well as discover the musical talent.
The format of KCRW Music Mine lends itself to users who don’t have a lot of time on their hands for messing around with configurations. Intead it’s an app that’s simple to browse and quickly find something of interest.
For fans who just want to kick back and relax, they can jut tap the KCRW’s 24 hour, all music stream Eclectic24 and enjoy the music, or they can listen in to full shows by many KCRW DJs.
KCRW Music Mine sounds like the ideal companion for KCRW fans and a fantastic app for music enthusiasts keen to find something new to love. I can certainly see some lazy Sunday afternoons being lost to checking out new music.
It’s free to download so why not give it a try today?
Rdio Unlimited Family, announced today, is a new discounted way to have more than one account for your family and friends. Calling it “the industry’s first digital music family plan,” Rdio hopes to allow folks who know each other group their accounts in bundles of up to three at a time. Each account acts as it’s own individual account, with the ability to listen to an individual mix of the over 10 million songs on the Rdio service. Users can also follow other Rdio listeners, and share songs and playlists with other users, Facebook, and Twitter. The accounts are fully functional Rdio accounts, able to access their unique settings on a variety of devices and platforms, including the iPad, iPhone, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Mobile 7, as well as home devices like Sonos and Roku.
“When we first introduced Rdio, everyone in the industry offered the same rates and service plans for on-demand music: five dollars per month for Web-only access and ten dollars per month for Web and mobile,” said Drew Larner, CEO of Rdio. “Now with whole families using Rdio, we’ve had a tremendous number of requests from our users for a family plan. We’re really proud to be the first digital music service to bring this type of plan to market.”
The new Rdio Unlimited Family Plan, users can save 10% with a two-account plan, at $17.99/month. If there are three accounts purchased in the bundle, there is a 23% savings, coming in at $22.99/month, while additional accounts above and beyond the three are charged at the standard $.9.99 per month. So, while a family of six will save some on the first three accounts, it might behoove them to purchase two family accounts, with up to three accounts each.
We hope to see more services adopt this “buy more, save more” approach with time, and Rdio is leading the way. I look forward to the time when the discounted savings includes more than three at a time, but this is definitely a step in the right direction.
With the enormous amount of music discovery, internet radio, and music subscription services available, the ones that have a unique idea deserve a little extra attention. The Hype Machine is a hybrid between a music blog aggregator and a music radio service.
While the Hype Machine just released their iPhone app, the service has been available online for a while. Hype Machine handpicks a variety of music blogs (and from the looks of it they use a large amount of them) and uses links to MP3s on those blogs to cook up radio stations in the app. It’s possible to actually read the source blog post within the app while the song it came from is playing. And since the very nature of most music blogs is to talk about relatively unknown, new and upcoming bands, the radio station turns out to be a powerful discovery tool.
The Hype Machine crew is selective on what types of blogs make the cut. On the Hype Machine blog they explain, “We look for genuine voices; people excited about music, thinking, drawing, experimenting, creating. We want people who would blog whether or not they were listed on the Hype Machine.”
The Hype Machine app allows users to listen by genre, popular music on the Hype Machine, recent posts, by blog, by friends, and also has a radio show highlighting the months’ best music. Also, by picking favorite blogs and songs, Hype Machine can create a Pandora-esque mix station.
Hype Machine already boasts over one million monthly visitors and has some interesting demographics. Users tend to be musically inclined with 20% of them being bloggers, 20% DJs, and 24% musicians. Before buying the app for $2.99, check out the type of music available and sign up at hypem.com.
Every now and then, an app comes along that makes you scratch your head in wonder at just how it works. One such app is What’s On Air. It kind of reminds me of the traffic alert system on my car radio but while I understand that, I’m intrigued as to how What’s On Air figures things out.
You see, this app keeps track of your favorite music then detects what songs and bands are playing currently on all manners of internet radio stations. Once it’s tracked the song or band name down, it can then switch to that station with the shake of your iOS device. Plus you can always browse through what’s currently being played on air.
There’s more too with multitasking meaning you can listen from outside of the app and you can browse through information about your favorite band courtesy of Wikipedia, YouTube and a full discography.
Priced at $1.99, What’s On Air looks set to be an ideal way of ensuring you get the best out of the radio airwaves.
8tracks is a site that lets you create and share digital mix tapes. Self-described as “handcrafted internet radio,” 8tracks allows users to upload the music files of their virtual playlists so that others can then legally stream their handiwork. This capability has now been expanded to the iPhone, as 8tracks Radio has been launched to the app store.
Some features of the 8tracks Radio app include:
Listen to user-curated mixes
Follow your favorite DJs and play their mixes through the Mix feed
Search for mixes containing your favorite artists
Browse hundreds of popular tags like alternative rock, sleep, sad, chill or dubstep
Listen to mixes everywhere – on your commute, at the gym or at home via AirPlay
The core philosophy behind 8tracks is that user-created playlists will trump those that are algorithmically generated. The online mixes that you submit to the open community via the website, along with accompanying cover art, must contain at least 8 tracks, with no more than 2 belonging to a specific artist. Listeners can then search by a variety of methods, and 8track offers select mixes curated by various notable sources such as SPIN, Pitchfork, Metric, Threadless, etc.
So, remember those days when you were mad at your parents, and you just broke up with your girlfriend, and you expressed yourself in the ultimate angst-ridden mixed tape? Uhm, yeah. Me neither. That was a friend of mine. Have any personal mixes that you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments…
“In less than 24 hours after its release, the BBC News application has shot up to #1 in the News category. It was a story about bureaucracy at its worst whenever the BBC Trust, BBC’s governing body, told their development team to shelve the iPhone application launch in the UK due to ‘uncertainty about the potential significance of whether [the BBC's plans] constitutes a change of service.’”
Over six months have passed since the BBC went live on the App Store, and now it finally has its much needed companion, the BBC iPlayer.
The application is a dramatic improvement over its web-based predecessor, both visually and in terms of features. Three categories – Featured, Most Popular and For You – work to bring you all of the latest TV catch with minimal fuss. iPlayer focuses on Radio too, with the Radio section receiving as much attention as its TV counterpart, including the same categories. Shows can be favourited, permitting quick access to your most important media. To make a show a favourite, either hold its miniature feature from one of the three categories and drag it up to the favourites bar, or tap “Add to Favourites” and it’ll do the rest. The favourites bar is accessible via the menu bar at the bottom of the screen, or by the star at the top.
Video quality is respectable, and the application offers High Quality where available. Unfortunately, it’s all Wi-Fi only, even for Radio, meaning 3G iPad ownerswill need to resort to creative means or join a Wi-Fi hotspot before media can be viewed. Obviously, stream quality will be network dependent, but in personal tests I found the video to be smooth and consistent. Content cannot be downloaded locally, so its online viewing only.
If you’re a parent who’s concerned about adult humour making its way into children’s ears, the BBC have included a Parental Guidance PIN that requires unlocking before adult-rated content can be viewed. A secret question is included in case you forget your PIN. However, be advised, once you enter a PIN there’s no way of reversing the process, meaning you’ll have to enter it in every time you want to watch or listen to a show marked with adult humour.
iPlayer includes a search and categories section also, the latter of which groups all shows into fourteen categories, ranging from Children’s to Films to Religion & Ethics. Conveniently, the search isn’t just by name only. Typing in Jeremy revealed a number of different shows that include Jeremy in its short text synopsis. Finally, the application also features channel listings for BBC One, Two, Three, Four, CBBC, CBeebies, News and Parliament. The entire week’s listings are present, along with a short text synopsis where available.
Overall, as a free tool, iPlayer will always remained installed on my iPad, but there certainly is room for improvement. Its lack of streaming over 3G is by far the biggest disappointment, something that its competitor The Guardian allowed last month in a major overhaul. In addition, you’ll have to manually check when new shows are added (related favourites will automatically be added to your favourites bar); a push notification alert wouldn’t go amiss for specific programs. Nonetheless, iPlayer is free, and that’s something not to be taken for granted. Better some features than none in this case.
“Jelli is the future of radio.” – Jaime Chaux – Austereo
I see a ton of music radio type apps come through my inbox every week, but none are nearly as ambitious as Jelli. Jelli is a crowdsourcing music platform that enables the listeners to really listen to what they want. Unlike most online-only platforms, Jelli is integrated into many radio stations across the country, from KITS-FM in San Francisco to WPST-FM in Philadelphia to provide an on air experience like no other. Listeners then can hop online and literally vote a song off the air… mid-play. As Jelli says, their product is true radio democracy.
Up until now, users of the system could only vote through their computers, leaving many people on the go without much of a say. To fix this, Jelly has launched the Jelli app which not only lets you listen to Jelli based community controlled playlists (consisting of music genre sections and no genre anarchy rooms) or any of the FM stations across the country that use the platform.
The app is a completely interactive app that lets you vote online for what comes next (much like iTunes DJ), and also lets you chime in as to whether the song that is playing “Sucks” or “Rocks.” If the song fills up the suckitude quota, it is instantly yanked off the air and the next song will play. To get a song on the air, or to get a song out of the list to vote on, you use your social gaming type rockets and bombs. When a song that you rocket up gets selected, your “DJ” name gets announced and you earn points for more rockets to use in the future. Use your rockets and bombs wisely though, because you only get a limited amount.
Jelli is free to download and free to listen to, so hop on board this new wave of internet/broadcast radio… and don’t pick any crappy songs.
When it comes to sounds that tickle the eardrums, I would consider myself a mass consumer. Whether it be local talk radio, sports, podcast, numerous music stations or even my 28GB+ of mp3s, it is safe to assume that I have my auditory nerves tingling as often as humanly possible. One way that I have found to mass consume both new and old music that I like is through a little website that many have become familiar with by the name of last.fm. The problem, as you can tell, is that I like to listen to far more than just music.
So what is a podcast, talk radio, news and music fiend to do? Why not download the new app AudioPress and let your entire media world be transformed. Combining feeds of everything that you like from all mediums, along with the latest news that is custom fit to you, might be a recipe for success. But what else does this new game-changing software bring to the table?
“AUDIOPRESS brings you the spoken word in all its forms—old and new—so you can hear all the news, entertainment, and information you want while on-the-go.
And with AUDIOPRESS, discovering content and creating sync-free playlists is easy, and intelligent playback can automatically play current episodes only and skip content you’ve already heard, so listening is ‘start-and-go!’” — VIA AudioPress description in App Store
If there were such a thing as custom designed applications, I believe that this would be the one made for me. I spend hours every week listening to numerous different forms of content that I love. The problem is that finding the type of information and entertainment can take months to line-up. This is where AudioPress could be the personal savior of my free time. Now the trick will be living up to the promises that they make in the trailer below. Give the app a download, because I can assure you that the sticker price of absolutely nothing is not going to break any bank.
Those wishing that the currently Europe-only Spotify music streaming service and iPhone app would hit to the rest of the world now have another option – MOG Mobile Music.
The MOG network has been around for a while but its new iPhone app makes it a serious contender in the audio subscription market offering similar, if not better, features by comparison to its rivals.
Highlights of the service include a library of eight million songs and some 700,000 albums that can be streamed to your iPhone over 3G and Wi-Fi and bundled into playlists. An unlimited number of songs can also be downloaded to the iPhone and stored for periods when you’re outside of Wi-Fi or cell areas.
The above features are all par for the course when it comes to this type of app and service but there are a few gems to be found in MOG Mobile Music too. The first is the true on-demand nature of the listening. Songs can be played at any time and repeated unlike many similar services that prevent repeat play, and you can listen to user playlists and customizable artist radio stations on the go. Artist radio isn’t as strict as the others either, with a simple slider determining how much of the artist you hear and how many similar artists are played.
It’s flexibility that seems to be the key difference between MOG and its rivals and, for a $9.99 per month fee, looks set to take a lead in the cloud-based music subscription game.
If you fancy trying out MOG Mobile Music, a three-day free trial is currently available when you download the app. No credit card is required either so you can sample the service risk free during this period.
While Pandora got the top billing when Apple demoed iOS 4 multitasking, other music services are also updating their apps to support background play.
Multitasking in iOS 4 allows compatible apps to run in the background while another app runs in the foreground. Apps in the background can continue to perform tasks such as play music streams.
Slacker Inc has announced that its personal radio application, Slacker Radio, has been updated to support multitasking and is available now for free on the App Store. The currently Europe-only Spotify is also headed for background-centric adjustment with the company announcing on its blog that an update has been submitted to Apple. The blog post goes on to suggest that a “surprise” will also be included in the update to thank users for their patience.
As well as music streaming, GPS navigation apps and social networking clients are also popular background enabled apps. Expect to see many more updates of this type in the coming days.
A new expansion pack is now available for The Hobbit: Kingdoms of Middle-earth. The Desolations of Smaug is available for free and features new campaign maps and bosses for players to strategize against, along with new armor and weapons for them to collect and equip.