Internet Radio Apps & Devices

Hi all, thought I’d start a separate topic for this rather than hijack an existing thread…

What do we think of the internet radio apps of today. Specifically do we like the all in one solution of Tunein and Tunein Pro or do we prefer to download specific station apps to use.

What are the pros and cons of each, in your opinion.

Personally I use and have used for many years (since 2012) tunein pro, (not the subscription service, the buy from play store version). Am I stupid and missing out on a better app or am I onto a good thing…?

Opinions welcome:)

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I’ve used RadioApp a few times, ABC listen got a workout over summer

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I tried radio app over summer, the song titles got stuck just before Christmas and have been the same ever since. ABC listen is a decent app. Used it for the cricket. I stick with tunein mostly because of the overseas stations that get mixed in with the locals

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For Australian stations I use RadioApp mostly. It has ABC/SBS and commercial stations. No community stations though.

I also find some radio station’s apps are quicker to load than RadioApp and also start playing that station straight away so I use these occasionally too. Notably ABC Listen app and SEN for sport as they have a good selection of all their online sport streams that are easy to find.

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Yeah. I just found some of the bugs in RadioApp annoying… like the song names getting stuck. And I can change what bitrate I listen to on tunein. Plus better support for Android Auto… I hate AM/FM sound in my car and the DAB is just awful reception and sound quality. RadioApps other annoy behaviour is if I turn off the car, get out for 5 mins and come back it doesn’t automatically start again like tunein or iheart.

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Tunein has a problem with this as well; the song titles often do not update properly and you’re left with just the station or programme name. Not sure if it’s a coding issue with mobile apps. Desktop clients like VLC seem to work better.

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I found if I put the stations direct link in(if you can obtain it from them, I have all the SCA ones) the song names tend to work. Iheart Radio is really the king at making that stuff work properly… the hit and mmm apps just get stuck on the last played song until you reopen the app.

Personally never had the song name issue on stations that offer it… but stations like 2dayfm just say the announcer on tune in. But having the stream select option is what keeps me on tunein

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Thanks for starting this thread. I was just going to post something about this issue and just found your thread. I’ve been using Radio App for a couple of years and it had mostly been very good.

It’s strange that the Currently Playing song titles are stuck on the image played back then and the Recently Played list is not being updating.

Could they have had their budget cut and don’t have the resources to support the app any more? Or are staff on holidays?

ETA: I notice they haven’t had an update to the app since April 2019.

I don’t use any of the official station apps, iHeartRadio nor RadioApp, as I feel they are very privacy invasive. Tons of trackers, forced logins, no thanks. TuneIn’s similar, plus I’ve had issues with it not routing audio correctly when headphones/Bluetooth connect and disconnect. And it’s pretty bloated.

What I do is find the direct URL’s for the streams, and put them into Receiver for iOS, which is an OK app. The one thing that annoys me about it is there’s no way to access Custom Streams from the CarPlay interface.

At home I have a Sonos system and I do the same; manually add the streams.

How do you find the direct URLs?

I’ve found this difficult for some stations. And when I do find them, then after a few months they stop working if the station changes the URL slightly or changes audio streaming providers.

If the station is streaming on Onlineradiobox, go to the Onlineradiobox page for the station and search for ‘stream’ in the source code. This works without fail. Most (all?) stations from ARN and SCA have been pulled off there, though, possibly for this reason.

Most independent online radio stations publish their direct URL on their website.

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Your browser dev tools are a good start. In Chrome go to the menu and select More Tools > Developer Tools. Then go to the Network tab, start playing some music and see if you can see any streams come up. A lot of stations these days use HLS, which is a constantly updating m3u8 file pointing to lots of small ts chunks. You’ll want to find the m3u8 file and put that in your player.

Other options include googling for the station and live stream. There’s a good chance someone else has found the stream already.

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I have had a lot of trouble getting this to work; VLC doesn’t like it.

Yes it happened about the 13th December, I sent them a ticket about it. Still plays just fine. But song names being stuck looks stupid when bluetoothed to a car or similar.

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I don’t mind the logins, just use my fb account. Which I don’t use for much so no problem there( doesn’t even have my real name on it). I agree Tunein is starting to get bloated. I’m not a fan of the always record feature that records like 15 mins incase u want to go back… wish I could turn it off. And when I get a call it records and plays from where I was… hate that.

I can’t get VLC to work with m3u8 playlists at all. I have to provide a link to the actual stream for it to work.

Has anyone created any VLC playlists with a good list of Australian stations?

I’ve had some luck doing this in VLC now with m3u8 playlists now working. I’ve setup a decent suite of Melbourne stations using these URLs:


ABC Radio Melbourne

1116 SEN

Magic 1278

89.9 LightFM;stream/1

Smooth 91.5

Nova 100

KIIS 1011

101.9 The Fox

Triple R Live Stream

Gold 104.3

Triple M Melbourne



Just a thought, why are the bitrates so low. I mean surely the standard these days is 128kbps like alot of the US/UK stations are using? Heck some are even in Flac at 1.4mbps in the UK.

Surely it is more pleasing to the ear of most people. I know it is for me:)

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SCA provide both 32kbps HE-AAC and 128kbps LC-AAC streams. Unfortunately their apps (and also RadioApp) default to 32kbps when on 3G/4G. It would good if you could force the 128kbps stream.

ARN and Nova though are very sub-par bitrates for music stations.

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I have a huge pet peeve for stations that don’t stream in a quality bitrate (I’m looking at you community radio).
For my webstations I always have 3 streams a low mobile stream 48/64AAC then a mid range stream 128/192MP3 and a nice HD stream 256/320MP3.
No one should be streaming MP3 below 128Kbps in todays day and age.

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