I play around with a bunch of different streaming services, but find myself gravitating back to Pandora. I like the interface, the built-in stations and the very few I have started on my own. In some hard-to-put-a-finger-on-it way, it seems closer to real radio than the others.
Plus, there’s a client for Windows Phone, and a not bad at all third party program for Ubuntu.
But it’s not perfect, and I wish for a few things. If you stream off the desktop and pay for a subscription, the stream is 192 kbps, which I’m fine with. However, streaming through a device like a Squeezebox or a Sonos is limited to 128kbps, subscriber or not. I’d like that increased.
The other thing I want is podcast integration of some sort. Stitcher set out to be the Pandora of spoken word audio and has done an admirable job, but I’d like it if Pandora would be the Pandora of the field. My guess is Pandora doesn’t because the audience is smaller, licensing is more complicated and figuring out how to do it without gumming up the interface is daunting, but still. I pay $4.99 a month now, and I’d add a dollar to the bill, maybe two, to get something like what I get from Stitcher.
Speaking of Stitcher, any time you guys want to do a Windows Phone app, my phone is waiting.