Sometimes, I hear nothing but the rain. And sometimes, especially in our barren summer, it’s all I wish to hear. A simple app called Raining.fm does the next best thing to making it rain: making it sound like rain. No, it’s not a joke, this is really all Raining.fm does. It’s available for Android and iOS as well as for the Web, so you can take the rain with you wherever you go.
If all you want is some background rain noise while working, Raining.fm’s free Web version is all you need. If, however, you’d like to fall asleep to soothing rain sounds, listen to them while you drive, or anything else that comes to mind, you can shell out $2 for the Raining.fm mobile raining app.
Yes, I know, you can get rain sounds for free any day of the week, but Raining.fm’s interface, slideshow, mixer and timers are a cute addition, and make a nice enhancement to your good old rain sounds.
Raining.fm Web App
The free Raining.fm Web app is not an impressive feat of design, but it does a nice job of making it (sound like) rain. The main part of the screen is taken by a circular slideshow of rain photos (there aren’t enough of these yet, but hopefully more will be added soon), with some controls available on the right.
Using these controls, you can create your own mix of rain, thunder, and lightning sounds, choosing which ones will be part of your mix, and giving each part its own volume. You can also set either a countdown timer for Raining.fm to prompt you to take a break, or a countdown timer for it to stop playing.
At the moment, the slideshow options don’t do much in the Web raining app, so don’t bother playing with those. This area offers a bit more to choose from in the mobile apps.
As far as customizations, this is pretty much it. For the full effect, click the “Hide panels” button and put your browser in full-screen mode. This way, you can enjoy the rainy experience with no distractions, at least for a few minutes.
Raining.fm Mobile App
The Raining.fm mobile app is available for Android and iOS, and looks about the same on both platforms. I chose to test the app on my Android device, and found an experience quite identical to the one on the Web, with the addition of some photo options, a mobile-friendly interface, and, every once in a while, an inability to make it stop raining.
As you can see, Raining.fm for mobile retains the same color scheme and general experience as the Web app, adding a master volume control for the entire rain experience, as well as a pause button. The Sounds tab includes the same rain, thunder and lightning soundtracks, which you can mix and match to create your own mix. Don’t spend too much time on this, though, as, unfortunately, the app does not retain any of your settings when closed.
Unlike the Raining.fm Web app, the mobile app lets you choose between the same classic slideshow available on the Web app, rainy photos from a Facebook competition held last year, or a combination of both. Here, again, the app will not save your preference when closed, so you’ll have to set this all over again next time you launch the app.
Timer-wise, you can set up a Break Timer, to stop playing and prompt you to take a break when time is up, or a Sleep Timer, which will gradually stop the raining when it reaches zero.
Things get slightly tricky when trying to exit the raining app, at least on Android (I expect this is less problematic on iOS). There are three ways to exit the app: the first is using the home button, which will leave the app running in the background. This means your phone will continue making rain noises.
The other two ways are tapping your device’s back button, or tapping the umbrella icon and choosing Exit, both of which will load an Are you sure? prompt, and let you exit the app entirely. In this case, the rain sounds should stop, but in fact, they don’t always. Several times I found myself stuck with rain sounds after the app was closed, which I solved by launching it again and exiting yet again, until the sound stopped.
The truth of the matter is, Raining.fm doesn’t do much, but it does provide a relaxing soundtrack to life which you can set up to your liking in just a few seconds. The raining app is not perfect yet, but I do like the fact that a single person stands behind it, trying to bring rain sound to rain lovers who just can’t get enough.
Give Raining.fm a try and let me know what you think. Looking for other ways to relax? Check out these 5 ways to relax using online tools. If you’re set on listening to rain. RainyMood is yet another rain-sound generator, with a soothing animation to boot, and JazzAndRain combines rain sounds with Jazz, if you’re into that sort of thing.
What is your favorite source of white or background noise? Tell us about it in the comments!