Anyone who even remotely enjoys music – and I believe that’s most of us – will absolutely love it when they discover new music that they like. We have a number of highly popular music services which allow us to do just that, including Spotify and Pandora. However, those definitely aren’t the only names in the music discovery business. In fact, some have existed for quite a while, including Slacker Radio.
About Slacker Radio
Slacker Radio is one of the original music discovery services. It uses the radio system in which there are different radios for different genres of music. The radios aren’t a live stream, but rather a collection of items which Slacker plays. Therefore, skipping songs is possible (although limited on the free version). Slacker Radio was also one of the very first “must-have” apps for Android.
Currently, the service is available through their website, as well as through mobile apps which are available for iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone 7, Windows Mobile, Nokia, and Palm. There are also apps for some home devices from Sony, Acoustic Research, Logitech, Sonos, and Roku.
Although there is a paid version available which removes ads and certain limitations, the free version of Slacker Radio works amazingly well. You may or may not be required to create an account before you use it on a mobile device, but regardless, it would be best to do that so you can keep all your stations and settings wherever you log in.
Upon first launch, you’ll find some quick links to common Slacker Radio resources, including a search function, an organized list of all Slacker Radio stations, station/playlist creation, favorite songs, and special content such as ABC and ESPN. For pure music, you’ll most likely want to browse through Slacker’s station collection.
As the 298 might have already alluded, Slacker has plenty of stations to keep you happy.
All of them are organized into larger categories, and within you’ll find the specific stations for certain genres.
When you’ve picked out a station you’d like to play, click on the play button on the right edge of the screen. This will send you to the station interface, which includes what song is playing along with other relevant information, track progression, and the album art. Along the bottom of the screen you can pause the song, skip forward (although free users are limited to 6 skips per day across all stations), a favorites button and a block button.
Slacker Radio also includes a wealth of preferences for you to mess around with. You can connect Slacker to your Facebook account, allow explicit content to be played, enable Ford SYNC support, resume playback on startup, keep the screen on while Slacker is open, enable wireless refresh, adjust audio quality, preload tracks, and configure headline news and ESPN updates. Essentially, these settings go into a good amount of detail, and it’s great to see Slacker support some interesting technologies such as Ford SYNC.
All mobile users should be able to easily install Slacker Radio through their regular sources by searching for “slacker radio“. For added convenience, Android users can find the application here while iOS users can find it here.
The website has a similar interface which is very easy to navigate around. You simply browse for the station you’d like to play by looking in the appropriate category, and hit play. Slacker will offer some recommendations for popular stations, but the point of the website is to find your music and get going.
I love Slacker Radio. Although I do personally prefer DI Radio more, there are plenty of people who will appreciate Slacker Radio’s ability to pause and skip songs at will, something that isn’t possible on DI Radio. If you need to check out some new music, or if you just want to try out a new genre, Slacker is definitely worth your time!
What’s your favorite music discovery/streaming service? Why do you like it the most? Let us know in the comments!
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