Slacker And FlyCast for BlackBerry Updated!

By Bla1ze on 23 Mar 2009 09:59 am EDT
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FlyCast And Slacker Updated!

Streaming radio applications are being released daily now but two of the top applications have seen some incremental updates over the past little while.

FlyCast: FlyCast users are now able to download ver. 1.32 for Bold, Curve etc. while Storm users are now at ver. 1.33. New features include Shoutcast support so that you may stream Shoutcast channels on your BlackBerry and there are even more podcasts and channels to choose from.

One thing about this update that displeases me though is that when looking up an album cover and artist it now auto launches your BlackBerry's native web browser, rather then displaying it within the application. Not cool in my opinon. Hopefully it'll be reverted and you do indeed have the choice to NOT update. You can download the newest FlyCast at http://www.flycast.fm

Slacker: Is now running at version 1.1.11, which now includes Bluetooth support. Be sure to grab it if Bluetooth support is something you have been waiting for from Slacker. The update available at http://www.slacker.com.

Topics: BlackBerry Apps

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Slacker And FlyCast for BlackBerry Updated!

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Yes, I've had version 1.1.11 for several weeks also. Some people may not be on-point with checking for updates without waiting to hear word so thanks for keeping those "slackers" updated! HAHA :-)

My previous versions of Slacker have all worked with my Moto S9hd, what exactley changed in the bluetooth department?

**In this release, we have added the ability to toggle between Bluetooth and Phone mode. If you are set to Bluetooth, then the audio will go out of the Bluetooth if paired, if not, then it will default to Phone Mode.

In Phone Mode, the music will go out of the Headphones if plugged in first, and then if no headphones are plugged in, it will go through the Speakerphone.**

That's what has changed...

I connected my Motorola S9 bluetooth headphones, and Slacker still plays over the phone speaker....not the headphones. Why????

I connected my Motorola S9 bluetooth headphones, and Slacker still plays over the phone speaker....not the headphones. Why????

I connected my Motorola S9 bluetooth headphones, and Slacker still plays over the phone speaker....not the headphones. Why????

Okay, it seems as if the latest version of Flycast on my Storm is worse than ever. Some of the channels load and play, while others load, indicate they are playing but there's no sound. Have to say that going into the browser for album art is a huge negative and the whole application seems a bit shakey! Anyone else experiencing these issues? Anyone got any fixes? The older version had it's downsides but it seems like the new app. is just worse than ever...and yes, I've made sure my compatibility mode is disabled.

OKAY - so I just downgraded the Storm to Flycast Ver 1.30...at least it seems to work and appears reasonably stable. Findng that it doesn't shift screen to landscape mode but a small price to pay. If anyone has success with 133, please post.

ok, when I download flycast from my storm it says i am downloading 1.32, when it should be 1.33, anyone else has this problem?

Last time I loaded, 129 was recommended for the Storm. 130 doesn't switch portrait/landscape on the storm but I know that 129 did the last time I had it on board.

Try using it on an 8900. The font on the main screen is now huge (it was perfect in .129). Wherever small fonts are used, they are microscopic in size!! The buttons at the bottom also have almost unreadable labels. Some 480x360 love please!! Also have the problem with channels not playing, etc. Downgrading to .129....

I wonder what exactly is meant by Bluetooth support for the new version of slacker. My headset has always been compatible with Slacker, so I'm a bit confused. Maybe the track control functions now work through Slacker? I'll test when I get on the train after work, heheh.

I had Slacker for a few weeks but dumped it for Pandora as soon as Pandora became available. Pandora is supremely superior, at least in my opinion. (I have been using Pandora almost since its inception on my PC, so I was used to Pandora out of the box. I heard of and used Slacker for the first time on my berry.)

Objectively,
- Slacker seems to lock up between songs, there is at least a substantial delay between them; none for Pandora.
- I didn't like having to answer whether I wanted to upgrade just to close the app, which is dangerous when driving, which is where I listen most often. Pandora has not asked me once.
- Pandora opens easier, which is an advantage in the car. Press on the app and it opens to your last radio station (after turning off the MG warning, at least). Unless you want to change the station, you need to do nothing after pressing the trackball. For Slacker, it opens to a list of potential radio stations and one has to move down to the favorites list, open it and select a station. It requires a lot just to get it going.
- Slacker limits the number of skips & "hearts" in the free version. Pandora does not, though there is a very high threshhold of skips per day per station for licensing reasons. I have never reached the limit in Pandora. Slacker, on the other hand, has a lifetime limit on the number of skips. Pandora also has, in addition to skips, an unlimited number of thumbs-up and -down based on whether you like or dislike the song. What does that mean: the endless opportunity to fine-tune your Pandora stations (some of mine have been fine-tuned over the course of literally years of up & down thumbs). Once you are out of skips in Slacker, you must accept what Slacker chooses for you.

On the other hand, both offer a great, free service: clear, digital music based on your preferences. For the record: I am not associated with Pandora other than as a user of its free service.

I agree that Pandora so far has seemed much better to me. (Had Pandora a little while longer than Slacker, but still only for about 6 months now.) But this is not an option yet for Storm users yet! =(

Another piece of info about the Slacker shutdown command. Yes, it pops up the screen asking you to upgrade, but if you don't click anything for about 10 seconds, it closes automatically. Did this on accident one day was too lazy to click close while driving and saw it close on its own.

Also, does Pandora have the option to cache the radio stations locally on your SD card? If not, that is a big plus for me. Not that I'm ever in an area without Data signal, but if I ever were (up in the mountains camping or something) it would be sweet. Also, it does seem to help battery life for long listening or at the end of the day when my battery is already getting low.

About the skip limit. I have hit the Pandora skip limit by hitting the Down Thumb too frequently (not normally necessary but on a very specialized station it was). Slacker has a 6 skip per hour limit, but not a lifetime limit that I'm aware of. You can also still select a Ban request even after hitting the 6 skips per hour limit, you must just listen to the song. It will still never play it again on that station after it has finished playing.

I also don't believe it has a limit to the number of favorites that I've been able to discover. I think the limit you might be thinking of is a 20 song limit to the number of Requests. You can request a song that normally would not play on that station. I believe this is similar to the Add Variety option in Pandora. Is this what you were referring to?

I agree that both products are awesome and have their pros and cons. I wish I could get an app for my BB that worked with both, and I wish that I could access either one with Boxee! :) Can't wait til Pandora is available for Storm, I'll prolly replace Slacker, especially if Pandora adds the feature to locally cache stations!

the caching feature is awesome. I generally listen to Slacker on the Storm while riding the train into work each morning. It's awesome to not have to worry about losing service and music playback. With my 8GB card, I can cache something like 25 stations. I have about 6 stations cached, which is way more music than i can listen to in an hour on the train each day.

EDIT: 25 stations available for cache.

Pandora is pretty awesome, there is no doubt. Unfortunately, Pandora is still not available for us Storm users. Slacker seems free of any delays or interruptions on the Storm, though the other issues you raised are certainly legitimate for users of the free version of Slacker. I'm now a paid Slacker subscriber, so I don't have to deal with any of that.

What drove me to Slacker and away from Pandora was that the song associations seemed better to me on Slacker. If I put on Dillinger Four Radio, 98/100 songs are songs that I would actively choose to listen to. Were I to choose Dillinger Four on Pandora, I felt like appropriate matches were only made 75/100 times. Obviously this is just my opinion, and in no way scientific!

One more comment: as a Storm user from launch, I applaud Slacker for providing us with an attractive and functional app from pretty early on. I still check Pandora on a fairly regular basis waiting for their Storm app, and it's really irritating that they've yet to cobble something together for us.

I have used all three on my 8310, and Pandora is easily the best, while FlyCast is easily the worst. Slacker is only usable if you take advantage of the caching feature.

I have a 2 gig card and Ihave some pics and videos of my kid saved on it, and have 453.5MB free space. Slacker says I have room to cache 2 stations, which seems to mean that you need at lease 225MB to cache a station (or about 4 station per gig). BUT now I am reading that people with 8 gigs can cache something one the order of 50 stations. It seems to me that at 500MBs per station, it would take 25 gig to cache 50 stations.

Am I missing something? Is my math completely off? I'd love to be able to cache more stations without getting a bigger card (which I may get any way).

Wow, okay, I totally made that shit up! I can cache exactly 25 stations. My fault! I have room for 58 favorites, apparently. Sorry for the bad information.

OK, that makes sense. That's about 3 stations per gig, where my estimate was 4 per gig, but I assume you've probably used about 2 gigs of you 8 gig card for other things.

I thought I'd be able to cache more stations with my 2 gig card, and was surprised to find only enough room for 2 stations, but then again, I hadn't checked my free space in a while, and I've been shooting pics and vids of the kid at the sledding hill, which chewed up a lot of space.

Over at Buy.com, you can buy 8GB microSD cards for $12.00. It's a pretty damn good deal. I'd buy one, but I already have 3 others laying around. :)

Wow. Just goes to show that you need to ckeck in on the tech. market more than once every few years. I paid $20+ for my 2 gig card only 2 X-masses ago, which I forget is forever in the tech. world.....and back in the early 90s when I was just out of college and working for a computer networking company (using the latest and greatest software at the time, which was Novell), a Fortune 500 company ran their whole show on 4 gigs of active storage, and 4 more gigs for mirrored-drive fault tolerance, and that cost something like $20-40k! And now it all goes in your pocket for under a $20.

I feel old :-)

Yes MJ you are either way old or way out of touch, gigabyte-wise. I bought a 16G Micro last summer for something like $79. So awesome.

And I bet in a year from now we'll look at that 16Gb for $79 and say 'man what a ripoff'.

How fast we change our buying perceptions and expectations.(sorry for taking the thread off topic but it's relevant, since Slacker rules due to its caching capability - I have that 16Gb in my Storm, with 3350 songs stored ON IT, about 6 episodes of various TV shows from videos4bb, 6 Slacker stations cached, and about 4Gb STILL FREE. Can't beat it).

I downloaded slacker to my storm but could not get it to play out of the headphone jack into my aux on my radio? Can anyone help with this?
Thanks

That happens to me sometimes. I just take the plug out and put it back in again. That usually does it for me. It doesn't seem to like switching from speaker to Line out for some reason.

Bluetooth has always worked with my motorola T505. I just updated to my new version last night. On my way into work this morning, it would play 1 song over the bluetooth connection, then start playing over the phone's speaker. If I turn the bluetooth receiver off and back on again, it would play one song and then revert back to the phone's speaker again. Am I doing something wrong?

This is on my Verizon Pearl.