There are few feelings like the times when you discover something unexpectedly. This is how I stumbled upon Jango Radio after browsing through some of the music apps in Apple’s App Store on my iPhone. For a free app that streams full-length songs based on artists you like, it performs far better than you might expect.
The idea of personalized radio is anything but new, but the way these apps are executed can vary pretty widely. We don’t get some of the well known music radio apps in Canada, so it falls to an app like Slacker to pick up the slack. But you should throw Jango Radio into the mix because it’s easy to use and offers some good customization.
Jango Radio works for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, as well as on Android. For BlackBerry PlayBook users, you can get good results by streaming it straight from the Jango.com website, since there’s no dedicated app yet.
What’s key about the apps is that they work for free, and with little to no advertising. But the best part — the app streams full songs, not short excerpts. In fact, you may end up finding a unique remix, a live recording or little known track from an artist you like. The app also streams in the background, and can fade in and out for phone calls.
A simple signup (email and password) is all you need to get started. Radio stations are based on artists you choose, so the music will be similar in a lot of ways. Tap the + symbol to the right of your newly created station and you can customize how wide the spectrum goes in terms of number of artists and songs, so as to avoid any repetition. Between popular artists, the app will throw in independent acts, where you might find something great to listen to as well.
On top of that, you can also tell the app to play more or less of a particular artist in a station, or create a new one based on that artist. You can also adjust the audio quality to low, medium or high for the stream.
For a change of pace from artist-based stations, there are 100 genre stations built into the app as well that you can stream the same way.
I’ve been using this app at home through a Bluetooth speaker system and on the road in my car and have discovered an array of songs and artists after just a week.
Give it a try and see how you might like it.
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