RAIN 11/24: Developer claims Apple blocking single-station iPhone apps

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RAIN 11/24: Developer claims Apple blocking single-station iPhone apps

Posted on: 11/24/2010


Jim Barcus of DJB Apps recently penned a letter to Radio Magazine, claiming that Apple rejected 10 of his company’s single-station radio stream apps on November 10. He claims (here) Apple told him, “single station app are the same as a FART app and represent spam in the iTunes store [sic] … [Apple] will no longer approve any more radio station apps unless there are hundreds of stations on the same app.”

So is Apple banning all single-station apps? Not really, writes technology blogger Trevor Long. After speaking with Apple, he argues, “It seems apparent that the apps in question all come from the same developer and are, in simple terms just the same app, redeployed with a different logo and a different live stream URL…However, if a station has an app developed, and submitted under their own name, it should breeze through.”

Even Long’s claims don’t seem to be true in all cases, though. Jacobs Media division jacAPPS produces iPhone apps for individual radio stations (example pictured at left) and would seemingly run into trouble with Apple in Long’s assessment. But president Fred Jacobs told RAIN that Apple approved four of jacAPPS’ iPhone apps in the past two weeks. That debunks Barcus’ accusations altogether.

Long sums it all up (here), “There is no ‘ban’ on single station apps.”

Radio expert James Cridland sees the whole episode as a warning. “If you genuinely think that the future of radio is on the internet, it’s time – once more – to think again,” he writes (here). “The future of radio is a multi-platform future: which means it’s easier to cope if one of the distribution methods we don’t control decides to change the rules on a whim.”


Ars Technica writes that the next update for iPhones, iPod Touches and iPads (iOS 4.3) could allow subscription charges within applications. That’s big news for print companies looking to monetize their apps, but it also could have an impact on webcasters.

Internet radio services could charge for premium subscription services right within the app, tying the fee to the user’s iTunes account. Users seem more willing to subscribe to Internet radio services when the fees are “bundled” in with other monthly fees. Take Slacker, for example. They’ve reportedly generated high subscription rates by bundling their fees with monthly cell phone bills (RAIN coverage *here). Ars Technica has more here.


In Wired‘s epic 100-item holiday gift guide for the geek in your life, the Pure Evoke Flow Wi-Fi Radio ranks in at #51. “Chances are your Wi-Fi signal is stronger than your FM one,” writes Wired (here). “Take Internet radio anywhere you go with the Flow, a slick, touchscreen, 802.11b-loving tuner that organizes a whole world’s worth of stations into a slick GUI.” The Evoke Flow costs $210.


Here’s another item for your Christmas list: the New Potato Technologies’ TuneLink Auto transmitter. The little gadget with a big name connects to your iPod Touch or iPhone through wireless Bluetooth. It then converts that signal into an FM transmission so your car stereo can pick it up. Basically, it streams audio content (including Net radio apps, presumably) to your car stereo — no wires needed.

The device earns bonus points for including a USB port (for charging gadgets) and a 3.5mm headset jack for music devices not blessed with Bluetooth. Engadget has more here.

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