More than a decade ago, when I got my first iPhone one of the first things I missed was not having a radio. At that time Spotify was just starting out and Apple Music didn’t even exist, so the radio was one of my favorite ways to listen to music. It turns out that there was the radio in iOS , although you had to download separate apps for it. Over the years this concept has been relegated to the background, however I always like to have a decent app for it . And there are, as is the case today.
Radio apps in iOS and macOS have sought to expand their possibilities over the years. In addition to playing live station URLs, they add features that take some of the fun out of the idea of radio itself – just playing content. These last days I discovered an app that goes back to those origins, simple and effective in its purpose, that of playing radio stations . It is Instaradio, an app that we can find in iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS.
Instaradio on an iPad Pro.
Explaining Instaradio is not very complicated, the app simply is made up of the list of stations that we have saved. From there you just have to choose the one you want to play and nothing else. What’s more, we can even have it play directly when we open the app. Some details why I have chosen Instaradio over other options:
- You have a list of predefined stations to add. But you can also find them by country or by station style (only music, news, specific genres…). If you still can’t find it, you can add a station manually by URL.
The history of recent songs played.
- If the station has extra information, the name of the song and the album cover will be displayed. You can collect this information from Apple Music or Spotify.
- It has a history of recent songs played and recognized.
- It has a timer to automatically stop playback after the chosen time.
- All preferences, stations and history are synchronized between all devices via iCloud.
- It has an app for the Apple Watch, something that is not easy to find in this type of app.
- Offers dark mode in macOS. If you like dark mode in the macOS interface, sure.
Instaradio MacOS version.
Instaradio is an app that can be downloaded for free on iPhone and iPad, also Apple TV. In the case of the Mac, the app is a paid one, with a price of 10.99 euros in the Mac App Store. A trial version is available at the official website of the developer. Also note that the app for iOS has a purchase in-app of 3.49 euros. What does it offer? Some extra features like being able to play from a custom URL.
My recommendation is to test the app in the free mode on all platforms . The truth is that what it has may be more than enough for most users. If you are really going to use it every day and want to do it on the Mac too, maybe it pays to buy the paid version. There are many radio apps in the App Store, most of them are either extremely complex with extra features and sharing options or they are full of advertising and extremely simple. Instaradio finds just the right balance between these two things.