Radio is probably the most under appreciated entertainment news media thing out there, but in 2010 Apple radio apps brought it with conviction to the iPhone. In all fairness, when you really think about it, you probably all love radio. When you’re stuck in traffic in your car, or you run our of iPod options on a tough day in work, it’s always there to help you out with a random track of brilliance.
However, with apps hitting iTunes at pace for radio channels like Xfm and Classic FM (two of our yin yang favourites) it sparked a bit of a resurgence for us. Streaming the radio channels, the iPhone turns into a portable radio player that you can either listen to with headphones or blare out like what those chavvy kids do when they gets on d bus wi’ dey fones held up like it were a mini ghetto blaster.
There’s also been the recent creation of the BBC iPlayer Radio app, as well as the TuneIn and Radioplayer apps, so you can now listen to beloved radio stations like BBC 6 music at the touch of a finger, bringing programmes like Adam Buxton’s Bix Mix Tape & Guy Garvey’s Finest Hour to your pockets with a fair bit of ease. While you were previously already able to stream the channels by visiting links like http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio/player/bbc_6music, a dedicated app has made the process a lot smoother.
For anyone wanting to make it easier to listen to your favourite radio channels without the need of a full app, you can simply pin the “listen live” link, like the one above, to your home screen by visiting the page, pressing share arrow button at the bottom of the page in the iPhone strip and selecting “Add to Home Screen”.
The radio apps on the iPhone work great though at the moment. They’re free too. The quality’s pretty good and they’re really easy to download and work. You can easily switch between channels with the stations button, so when Xfm gets too annoying (it happens a bit too much to be honest) you can flick over to a little Bach on Classic. Pow!
All good, but we reckon it would be a lot cooler to sort out full digital radio for one of the next iPhone incarnation, considering the digital radio switchover scheduled for 2015. This would mean that the device would pick up on the digital signal directly instead of having to rely on an internet connected stream, but sadly it’s not on the cards at the moment.