We audition several streaming music services and give you the low down on each one
A candidate for the world's oldest known instrument is the Divje Babe Flute carved from the femur of a cave bear over 40,000 years ago. Replicas proved it was capable of two and a half octaves, or three if overblowing. Over time, musical instruments would become more sophisticated, as would the songs, but one thing that hasn't changed is the inherent love of music that nearly all human beings seem to possess.
No slacking at Slacker as it sees millions of new subscribers join in three months.
Have you given the recently overhauled Slacker service a whirl yet? Millions of others have. According to Slacker, more than six million new listeners have joined the streaming music service since its February relaunch, with 3.5 million listeners jumping on mobile. Not only is Slacker seeing an influx of new users, but they're listening longer than before and they're subscribing to the service, Slacker says.
Slacker relaunches with a brand new look and support for BlackBerry 10.
Facing stiff competition from the likes of Pandora and Spotify, popular streaming music service Slacker just reinvented itself with a new look and simplified interface. Its name stays the same, but that's about all you'll recognize (visually) following a major facelift that's supposed to make it easier to discover music with highlighted stations, personalized picks, and exclusive content from Slacker's "expert curators."
From records and 8-tracks to MP3s and Walkmen, technology changes the way in which we absorb our music. At this point, few people have memories of hauling suitcases full of cassette tapes (or even CDs) around with them on vacation as kids, and in a few more years perhaps even the ever-ubiquitous iPod will be just a memory of the past, removed from it's throne by a software that streams music to you directly in your head.
Until then, we have to make do with the technology that we have - and increasingly music fans are incorporating cloud-based, streaming services into their repetoire. From long-standing services like Rhapsody, to just-released softwares like Spotify, there are a slew of streaming music services to choose from. So, which one will work best for you? Read on for the highlights of twelve of the top options and be sure to let us know what your favorite is in the comments!
If you're a Sonos user, go grab your dancing shoes and air guitar, because the Sonos System Software 3.6 update gives you more ways to rock out. One of the big additions is Android tablet support via the Sonos Controller for Android app. With Android smartphones already supported, users are now able to wirelessly control Sonos from any Android 2.2 (or above) device with this update, including the Kindle Fire.
AOL just sent us word that it's relaunching its AOL Radio service, which is now powered by Slacker. It's a major overhaul with a top-to-bottom redesign, custom artists stations, improved functionality, fewer commercials, and a greater than 10 million song catalog. Listeners will have over 200 stations to browse, including custom artists stations, ESPN Radio, and a whole bunch more.
Listen to the mind-numbingly repetitive radio programming on the FM dial long enough, no matter which genre you prefer, and you might conclude that only a handful of recording artists are worth listening to.
Fire up your PC and tune in to Internet radio, on the other hand, and you’ll discover an embarrassment of riches, nearly all of which you can enjoy for free and without—or at least with very little—commercial interruption. In fact, there’s so much music that you might find yourself overwhelmed. That’s where the music discovery services Last.fm, Pandora, and Slacker come in. All three services help you discover new music based on the songs and artists you express a preference for. As interesting as that concept is, what’s even more remarkable is that each service takes a completely different approach to the mission. Let’s take a look at all three.
The second-generation Slacker personal radio player is smaller, slimmer, and even better than the first. There may be no better way to listen to free music. Slacker announced a new version of its portable radio today, and we’re happy to say the Slacker G2 kicks just as much ass as the original product we reviewed last April.
Here’s Slacker in a nutshell, if you don’t want to re-read our previous review: Slacker radio is much like Pandora or Last.FM in that you can listen to music on the Internet for free (along with an occasional advertisement) while the service analyzes your expressed taste in music and recommends new artists it thinks you’ll enjoy.
The trade-offs are that you can't always choose which songs you want to hear, and you can skip only a limited number of tracks. Slacker also a subscription plan ($7.50 per month if you pay for a year at a time) that eliminates the ads, enables you to call up saved tracks at will (as long as you maintain your subscription), and allows you skip an unlimited number of tracks.
The second-generation Slacker personal radio player is smaller, slimmer, and even better than the first. There may be no better way to listen to free music. Read on for our full review.
Just when we’d concluded that there was nothing new under the sun when it comes to digital music players, along comes the Slacker Portable Radio to smash all our preconceived notions. This $200 device takes the music-discovery innovations pioneered by Pandora and Last.fm and puts them in the palm of our hand.