Win a Prize, watch “The Gadget Professor” sign up for the newsletter and send Don some feedback on this new show. You can win a Dymo Label Printer. Lots of parts in Motion. We demo CueToo.com our new media on demand site. New ads campaigns starting next week as well. Next show will be from the Geek on the road.
Big Alien Conspiracy announcement on Monday that truly could shake up the government. Listen for details. The better half, told me to lighten up she said I have become robotic. I truly hope you enjoy the show and thanks for staying subscribed. I give you all a little insider look on today’s show on how I get a bit wrapped around the axel with the day to day grind.
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I remember it well. Back around October of 2004, I first heard the word “podcast” used on The David Lawrence Show via my XM Satellite Radio. It sounded interesting, and I wrote it down on my driver logbook cover with the idea of looking it up later. I heard David mention it again once or twice over the next few weeks. Finally, in early December of 2004 I finally got around to looking it up. I found Adam Curry’s podcast, realized what it was, and knew that I felt compelled to not only listen to podcasts but get involved as a podcaster myself. This was exactly what I’d been looking for for many years – a wide variety of content that I could choose, download, and control the playback/consumption of on MY terms.
Podcasting took previously-existing elements and applied them with a new twist. MP3 files had already existed for a number of years. Virtually every computer already came with a sound card and had the basic ability to both play back and record audio. Portable MP3 players had been around for a while. Apart from Adam Curry’s and Dave Winer’s contribution of the podcasting concept and making it work, the one key element that suddenly made podcasting viable and actually inevitable was the fact that Internet bandwidth got good enough to make it practical.
Practical is an important key.
We have now passed another important milestone in terms of mobile bandwidth. Mobile bandwidth, while not yet perfect, has improved dramatically in both terms of data delivery and coverage. About three or more years ago I had experimented with streaming audio via my smartphone while driving my truck, and quickly determined that it wasn’t viable. I couldn’t listen long at all before I would lose the stream. No problem, I had plenty of podcasts to listen to.
I’ve been hearing a lot of people talk about Pandora.Com lately, so last week I finally tried the Pandora Android app out on my new Sprint HTC Evo. To my surprise, it worked amazingly well – even in Arizona and the western third of New Mexico along Interstate 40 where Sprint still has 1XRT service. The streaming music sounded great, and the few times it did briefly drop out in a couple of mountainous areas, it automatically reconnected and reestablished the playback stream.
(By the way, a side note – I was surprised to learn that Verizon has NO data card coverage around the Kingman, Arizona area – my Verizon aircard would NOT connect in the Kingman area.)
Streaming radio via the Internet in a moving vehicle is now practical. Smartphones have also reached critical mass to the point where they are really beginning to move into the mainstream. Even though streaming Internet audio has been around for quite a few years at this point, I believe the automotive market for streaming audio is about to open up in a massive way.
Up until this point most people have felt that streaming Internet radio had plateaued or was only going to grow slowly. I believe that improved cell networks along with smartphone proliferation will create a new market for streaming audio services. The automobile has been the traditional stronghold of terrestrial and now satellite radio services. An old kid that’s been around a while suddenly has a big and growing shot at a new lease-on life.
I believe opportunities exist for streaming Internet radio stations that deliver highly specialized content. For us geeks, imagine a 24/7 tech-centric streaming station. The sky really is the limit. The cost of running a streaming station can be very low, so therefore it becomes possible and practical to narrowcast to relatively small audiences.
Like a goof ball I forgot to announce a winner tonight on the PodcastMadness GNC giveaway. Promise to do it first thing next show. Lots to catch you all up on including some minor construction that is going to take place here in the Studio. Time to update the electrical capacity so we don’t stress and circuits. Bringing some serious amps into the studio via a local electrician. If you want to contribute to the show 500 fund for a needy audience member please paypal email@example.com any donation is fine.
As you can see I have added a dedicated page at GNC to help you when you make a purchase at GoDaddy.com. Feel free to share this page and link to it if you can from your own sites big thanks in advance to those that do.
This last week I gave up my older HTC 8125 for the Apple iPhone. It’s been an interesting experience so far and I really like how the phone works. I also like the apps – Especially the ones that keep me productive. I am not really a gamer or a fluff app person – I may download and try it, but those apps usually go to the wayside.
Two apps I was excited to try out were Stitcher: a Podcast aggregation site, and Pandora: for online radio stations. I’ve used both before getting the iPhone and couldn’t wait to install and try them.
Of course, I could just use the integrated iTunes program on the phone. It does music and aggregates podcasts. However, I like to try out all the options – make sure I have the easiest and best program.
So let’s take a look at each program and see what advantages there are to it.
If you haven’t tried this site out yet, you should. Stitcher is a Podcast aggregator. You can get many great podcasts, add them to your watch list and be alerted when new episodes are available. You can listen to your shows on your iPhone, Blackberry or on any PC.
In turn, iTunes also has an area to download podcasts. You can search the store and download episodes. However – As Todd noted in his last podcast – While the PC version lets you subscribe to the podcast, the iTunes store only allows you to add episodes. I have yet to find a way to “Subscribe” from the iPhone.
Pandora has just been in the news because of the agreement they have reached for Internet radio. You can join up with a radio station, listen to it and move on. The control of the music is not that great; which was a design of the new agreement. You can skip songs, but only 6 per hour. All this, so you won’t have to pay for any music you want to hear.
Flipping over to iTunes, you can pay .99 cents a song, sync up with one computer to get your playlist of songs and go. You can customize your playlists and listen to new songs. They even give you some free ones.
There are other apps, like Audio books. Audible lets you read books right from your iPhone. iTunes also has an Audiobook option. I have not tested that feature yet, so we will leave it as a footnote.
The biggest advantage iTunes has is that if you have to use another application; like checking your email, whatever you are listening to will continue to play. If you try the same for Pandora or Stitcher, the program will close. Once the application is re-opened, you will be able to continue listening. However- in the case of Pandora – it will not continue where it left off.
iTunes will also do video – TV shows and even Video Podcasts. While there is no Hulu application (yet), you do have the option of YouTube – which also comes with the native OS.
I don’t want to make it sound like you shouldn’t download Pandora or Stitcher. They are great programs in their own right. The applications are free and can be an addition to any iPhone. That is why they are on my iPhone to stay.
Big shocker tonight please do not send hate mail, I know your gonna send it anyway ;). Lot’s to share as well as a invite to come hang out for the Tech Podcast Network Round Table this Saturday. I also may have a live streaming event tomorrow at about 5:30pm HST visit GNC for more details. Plans for show 500 talked about as well hope you will consider being part of it. Special job announcement on the Podcast tonight as well looking for a extremely qualified candidate.