Radio Apps For Your Smartphone

Category: Music

Radio stations have been broadcasting over the Internet since 1994. Internet radio is quite popular; up to one in seven Americans listens to Internet radio at least once a week, according to market researchers. So it's not surprising to find plenty of apps that bring Internet radio to smartphones. Here are some of the best radio apps for iPhone and Android phones.

Free Radio Apps

You'll find a mix of both free and paid radio apps available for download to your smartphone. Some will operate in a web browser, bringing your favorite music to your computer's desktop. Let's start with the free apps.

iHeartRadio is a free radio app from Clear Channel. It provides access to over 750 popular radio stations in the USA, from Z100 in New York to KissFM in Los Angeles. iHeartRadio also includes boutique stations run by individual artists, traffic and news reports from major cities. This app is great for people who travel, and want to find their favorite hometown station or talk radio show.

Pandora Internet Radio is a very popular free radio app for Android, iPhone or Web. Pandora does not play traditional radio station programming; instead it puts the listener in charge. You can start with the name of a favorite artist, song, or classical composer and let Pandora create a custom "station" of similar music. You can also browse genres or fire up a Quick Mix selection based upon your listening tastes. You can purchases songs with one tap and read notes about a track or artist. You can also rate and review music.

Slacker Personal Radio features a slick user interface and lots of flexibility, on your iPod Touch, iPhone, Android smartphone, or desktop web browser. Like Pandora, Slacker lets you choose from a genre, or plays custom stations based on what you like. There is an ad-supported free version and two ad-free subscription services. The basic paid subscription costs $4/month. It includes the ability to save the streams of your favorite stations on a memory card for offline listening; unlimited song skips; lyrics for many songs; and non-music programming such as news, business reports, and talk radio. The $10/month premium subscription adds on-demand access to any song in Slacker's library of millions, and lets you create your own custom playlists.

TuneIn Radio gives you access to over 50,000 Internet radio stations, for free, and runs on all popular smartphones. Tune in to music, news, sports, podcasts, and public networks such as the BBC, NPR, etc. The free version is ad-supported, while the Pro version includes the ability to record tracks.

Paid Radio Apps

Rdio is for people who want to hear that certain song, now! It's fine to create a station based on your favorite artist, and wait for your favorite song to pop up in the playlist. But if you want to hear a specific song, or listen to an entire album, Rdio is the ticket. Rdio (pronounced R-dee-oh) is a combination of the words radio and audio, and will let you listen almost anywhere. Rdio works in your web browser, on your PC or Mac desktop, on Android, iPhone, BlackBerry, and Windows smartphones, and on Sonos and Roku systems. Rdio also provides licensed MP3 music downloads, so it's 100% legal. After the 7-day free trial, Rdio Unlimited (Web + Mobile) costs $9.99/month, or get Rdio Web for $4.99/month.

Tuner Internet Radio was the first radio app for iOS (iPod, iPhone, iPad) devices. It costs $5 in the Apple App Store. Tuner provides access to thousands of radio stations worldwide. You can browse by genre or search a station directory. You can add your own stations to the selection easily.

Tunemark Radio from Stormy Productions is an iPhone and iPad radio app. It can play tens of thousands of Internet radio stations from the SHOUTcast database. The Tunemark button lets you bookmark a song you like, email a link to it, or go directly to the iTunes Store to purchase the song. Tunemark Radio includes an alarm clock and sleep timer. It costs just 99 cents on iTunes.

Do you listen to your favorite music or radio station with a radio app? Tell me your favorite, and why you like it! Post your comment or question below...

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Most recent comments on "Radio Apps For Your Smartphone"

Posted by:

Dvorah Getzler
26 Sep 2011

TuneIn Radio is first class -- I use it on my Ipod Touch with great pleasure. I have also found that the folk who run it are constructively responsive to queries: they actually reply promptly to emails! I seem to remember that the Ap. cost me all of 99 cents! A real bargain -- no ads, just world radio at the touch of a button. Great.

Posted by:

26 Sep 2011

My personal preference is WunderRadio from the folks at AOL radio is also surprisingly good.

Posted by:

Mark Kusz
27 Sep 2011

I use TuneIn Radio on my iPad. Has all my local radio stations. I have listen to NFL games on it too, but for some reason MLB games do not get streamed and I get alternate content. ESPN radio is also available on the app.

Posted by:

05 Oct 2011

I used the free version of Tunein Radio and liked it so much that I upgraded to the pay version 99cents - a bargain..
It has stations that broadcast from Mexico, which i could not find in other apps.
Plus it broadcasts all of the Canadian and US stations that you would expect.

Posted by:

Gregg DesElms
30 Nov 2011

TuneIn Radio, I've decided, is just about the best...

...though I went ahead and popped for the paid version to get rid of the ads. I'm not sure I need the abilty to record which the paid version provides, but it's well worth it to get rid of the ads. The ads, on a smartphone are WAY more obtrusive and irritating than they are on a desktop/laptop computer... thought they're pretty vexing there, too.

Of course, on the Windows desktop/laptop, my hands-down choice is the freeware (or thhe paid, either one) version of RadioSure. In fact, they really need to write an Android app. That would make things just about perfect.

Either that or TuneIn needs to write a desktop/laptop app like RadioSure. If it did that, since I now use TuneIn on the Android phone, I'd likely switch from RadioSure to TuneIn so I'd have the same favorites and whatnot on both devices.

Nice list of apps, though. Thanks!

Gregg L. DesElms
Napa, California USA
gregg at greggdeselms dot com

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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Radio Apps For Your Smartphone (Posted: 26 Sep 2011)
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