RAIN 6/4: GotRadio unveils elegant new site
NEW DESIGN FOCUSES ON INTUITIVE CONTROLS, RICH FEATURESTo celebrate 7 years of streaming, Internet radio service GotRadio has launched a brand new website and plenty of new features. The service offers over 60 non-customizable channels — from rock to reggae, Native American to jazz.
The most striking changes are the site and the player which beautiful and well-designed. The player launches as a slide-out sidebar window, allowing users to minimize it or open it in a new window — a nice touch. Within the player, there’s large album art, metadata, music controls, a five-star rating bar and tabs to see the song history and to easily access other channels. The site is elegant and easy to navigate, while also offering some fun information about each channel. Users can see how many people are currently listening to each channel and who programmed it. They can even instantly send messages to the programmers!
Other changes include a move away from on-demand streaming and temporary closure of GotRadio memberships. GotRadio founder Val Starr says a new commercial-free version of GotRadio will be launched later in the year for subscribers. GotRadio is also now Mac-friendly and offers a free iPhone app.
“It’s been a wonderful journey with GotRadio over these past years and I feel blessed with every day that I am able to continue to do what I love most,” Starr told RAIN.
GotRadio is a compelling, fun and well-designed service in its own right, but I think it also incorporates many ideas broadcasters should pay attention to when streaming online. — MS
Yesterday at TechSummit, experts tackled the issue of Internet radio in cars and the message was clear: in-dash Net radio is coming. “Consumers don’t care about how they get their radio,” argued RadioTime CEO Bill Moore. Fraunhofer USA Director/Marketing & Business Development Jan Nordmann predicted in-car Net radio would arrive within two or three years. Oh, and AT&T dropping unlimited data plans? “There’s no issues,” said Livio CEO Jake Sigal after doing some calculations. “I still think we’re fine” (see the next story for more on this issue). Radio Ink has more coverage here.
Meanwhile, the Convergence conference yesterday hosted a discussion about radio and mobile devices. “It confounds me day in and day out why people aren’t looking more closely at mobile, specifically the ability to create deeper relationships,” said Vibes Media Director/Head of Radio Vertical Steve Levy. Paul Jacobs of Jacobs Media also appeared, warning that Pandora “is coming on strong” while urging broadcasters to “keep moving forward.” Radio Ink has more on the mobile panel here.
Convergence continues today, with RAIN publisher and AccuRadio CEO Kurt Hanson presenting his “State of the Industry Address,” then moderating a Net radio panel which will include AccuRadio COO John Gerhon.
“My conclusion: It’s a non-issue,” writes Mark Ramsey (here), who says a very small percentage of AT&T users will be in any way affected. Jerry Del Colliano agrees: “For most Pandora listeners, the elimination of AT&T’s unlimited data usage programs is a non-event,” he writes on his Inside Music Media blog (here). David Pogue of The New York Times even argues that the changes will save AT&T customers money, showing that he and his wife will actually save $360 a year. “AT&T has put together one of the fairest, most carefully considered plans in a long time,” he writes (here).
These arguments are quite welcome, as many analysts also believe other wireless carriers will also drop their unlimited data plans in the near future.
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