Tuesday, June 01, 2010
Questions about streaming audio on the Blackberry
One of my favorite blogs, Herculodge, had been posting links to my radio-related posts here. After my post about listening to radio on the Blackberry, a reader named Keith posted the following question:
Neil, wouldn't it be simpler and cheaper to just listen to a radio when you're above ground, and switch to an mp3 player when you go underground?
I've always been a broadcast radio listener, and probably always will be, as long as it still exists, but web radio and podcasts are a fun alternative.
Here is my reply:
Listening to regular radio stations on the train has proved to be a bit difficult. My commute is about 40 miles on the LIRR. There's too much RFI for AM stations until I get about half way into the trip where the NYC stations are closer, and forget about any shortwave. FM, is the same issue as AM, and if I start out listening to the NPR station I get at home, I eventually lose it about 20-30 minutes later. When I switch to the next available NPR station, the programming is time-shifted so that I sometimes hear the same stories again. Streaming allows me to listen to anything with very minor interruptions.
There's also something cool about listening to a station half way around the world from a place where we never could before. I guess this is what attracted many of us to the radio hobby in the first place.
Years ago, I was in sales and drove for a living. I had a Y-splitter on my car antenna, and used to put the SONY 2010 on the passenger seat on long trips patched in to the car stereo. I do this in the car now with the Blackberry. Where it's really nice is driving upstate, which I do quite often, and keeping whatever station I had on in the city streaming as I drive out of range. Also, music from Pandora, Slacker, and Radio Paradise, etc., is nice to have on the road instead of local radio at times. There are places where the choices are getting awful with companies like Clear Channel buying everything in sight.
Photo: David Reeves, Flickr