26
Sep
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There is no shortage of streaming music services that want to pipe tunes into your ears, but Slacker Radio just made its offering much more attractive for Android users. The app has a brand new clean interface and the option to instantly build a station based on what you happen to be up to.

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The app has done away with the strange combination of Metro-style tiles and old fashioned Android tabs that it was rocking before. Now it's much more modern-looking and super-responsive. There are engaging little animations and visual effects that make the app feel much more polished than its previous incarnation. Check out examples of the old UI at the bottom.

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It's not just the look that has improved – everything works better too. Just like before, you can choose a station and get listening. Premium subscribers can also play specific songs on-demand and build offline playlists. The way the 'now playing' UI slides up from the bottom is by no means unique to Slacker, but it's a nice addition to the app and a vast improvement over the old version. In the same vein, the notification can now be used to control playback, whereas before it was just a link back to the app.

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The new My Vibes feature is kind of like a hyper-personalized radio station – it's music that's supposed to fit with what you're doing. You can choose the day of the week and general time of day, then pick from several suggested activities. You get things like Energy Boost and Concentrating for a Thursday afternoon. Set the app to Friday Night mode, and things get serious with Partying and Sexy Time.

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The old interface

The update should be going live in the Play Store right now, but it could take a few minutes for everything to show up. Just be patient. You can get all the features in Slacker Radio for $9.99 per month, or just get rid of the song skip limit and ads for $3.99 per month.

Ryan Whitwam
Ryan is a tech/science writer, skeptic, lover of all things electronic, and Android fan. In his spare time he reads golden-age sci-fi and sleeps, but rarely at the same time. His wife tolerates him as few would.

  • jm9843

    This is good. The old "metroish" design was so atrocious that I had to uninstall the app.

    • Matthew Fry

      Last time I saw it, it was all grey and black. I've missed several UI changes.

    • ElfirBFG

      It was tolerable in 'night mode'.

  • PamelaLibrarian

    OMGosh, Sexy Time on Friday Night, that's hilarious!

  • spydie

    Or, for $7.99/mo you can get SiriusXM ala-carte and pick your 50 stations with the Starmate 5, 6, and 8 radios and not have to use your data to listen to music! Geez, these streaming companies kill me. Pay them $8 a month AND pay for the data streamed. Works good, though if you are at home or work all the time on WiFi and don't mind the interruptions (every hour or less most of them stop playing and display a page that says "are you still listening? We pay for these songs and don't like playing to an empty room" (Pandora)) and you have to stop what you're doing and press "continue" to keep the music flowing.

    • David Hartman

      With Slacker, you can cache to your phone and not stream. And the music doesn't stop every hour. I came to Slacker from XM and have never looked back. Even on XMs genre and decades stations, I have to listen to what they want to give me. With Slacker, I listen to only what I want. I'm pretty indifferent about Slacker's "Songza" addition in this update. But as soon as they let me access my own local music library stored on my phone for creating playlists with their music, Spotify will become as irrelevant as XM.

      • Tim242

        $3.99/month for no ads, unlimited skips = win : )

    • Ajanu

      I have sirius radio, and still listen to the webapp or android app 70-80% of the time. The only time the actual radio reciver is better is when I am driving. I also use free slacker, though the app was killing my battery randomly so I had to use greenify when I quit. For fully free, customizable radio SLacker is great, you don't need to pay anything. Set up your station well and you won't hit the skip limit.

      Sirius just started the MySiriusXM stuff in Canada, I still have not played around with customizable stations.

    • Tim242

      Slacker Plus is $3.99/month. No ads, unlimited skips.

  • Mantas

    Not available in uk...

  • Marcelo

    Love the new design and UI, the only thing that has bothered me is that uyou can't rotate the screen

  • fluffymonsters

    WTF happened to the rotation? I like the dark colors but my device sits on landscape mode on my desk. Not liking this.