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Stitcher is the leader in on-demand news and talk radio for mobile phones. The Stitcher app can be downloaded free of charge from the iPhone, BlackBerry, Palm webOS or Android app stores. Stitcher offers listeners news, sports, entertainment, talk radio, comedy and other streaming-audio broadcasting from the world's top media sources, including: The New York Times, NPR, Fox News, MSNBC, BBC, AP, TechCrunch, Air America Media and many more. Like Pandora, Stitcher allows listeners to customize the content they hear using a sophisticated personalization algorithm. However, Stitcher is the first -- and currently the only service of its kind -- to allow customization for news, information, and talk-radio content. Stitcher’s content is hosted in RSS or XML format so that all audio feeds update automatically.
Stitcher is similar to Pandora in the customization aspect of the listener experience but differs in that it serves up news and talk-radio content. According to CNET, Stitcher "is to news and information what Pandora is to music." Stitcher uses a personalization algorithm that influences which audio shows are recommended to specific users. This algorithm draws on data such as listening patterns and behavior to personalize the content of each station according to the listener’s interests. The personalization algorithm gains more knowledge about a user the more that user listens and becomes better at personalization over time. Listeners can also "stitch" together personalized stations comprising just their favorite shows. Whether users' interests be niche or main-stream, Stitcher's library of thousands of shows (all updated onto their phones automatically with no syncing or wires) "is the best way to make every minute between the treadmill and the traffic jam count" (-- San Francisco Magazine).
Awards and Honors
The free Stitcher app for the iPhone, BlackBerry, Android and Palm webOS has received numerous awards for the high-quality news and talk-radio service it provides. In 2009, Stitcher beat out fellow nominees The New York Times, NPR, BBC, and The Associated Press to claim the 2009 People’s Voice Webby Award in the Mobile News Category. Hailed as the “Internet’s highest honor” by The New York Times, the Webby is the leading international award honoring excellence online and on mobile phones. Stitcher was also honored by San Francisco Magazine, which awarded the app a 2009 "Best of the Bay" award. Stitcher was listed twice in PC Magazine’s list of the world’s top free apps, ranking both among the Top 20 Free BlackBerry Apps and among the Top Ten Palm Pre apps, and Gizmodo added Stitcher to the free apps edition of its Essential iPhone Apps directory in late 2009.
Stitcher has been featured twice by Apple in the App Store and once by Palm in the App Catalog, and has been designated as an Apple Staff Pick.
Usage and Features
Unlike traditional podcasts, Stitcher users do not need to sync their devices to a computer to get updated content; programming on Stitcher is updated automatically as content providers record new shows and podcasts. Stitcher listeners can simply grab their mobile phones and listen to fresh and current content on-the-go. Stitcher 3.0 for the iPhone (released in December 2009) introduces live streaming to the app, allowing users to toggle between their favorite on-demand shows and popular talk-radio programming streamed live.
- Stations by topic: Users can select stations by topic, such as World News, Politics, Sports, Entertainment, etc.
- Stations by content provider: Users can also select stations by content provider, such as CNN, MSNBC, NPR, ESPN, etc.
- Specific shows: Each station provides a list of different shows that users can play in a rotating order or select at will.
A user can pick any show to add to their favorites station using the “Add to Favorites” button.
iPhone users can choose to receive SMS updates when their favorite shows are updated. When new content becomes available, Stitcher will send a text message to a user alerting them that the show was updated along with a direct-play link.
Stitcher offers an Editor’s Picks station that provides listeners access to the content editor’s favorite shows.
Stitcher offers stations targeted to specific local audiences.
The iPhone 3G and other mobile platforms
Stitcher is currently available on the iPhone, Palm Pre, Palm Pixi, Droid, HTC myTouch 3G, G1, MILESTONE, Android devices running at least version 1.6 of the Android operating system, BlackBerry Tour 9630, Storm 9530, Storm 9500, Bold 9000, Curve 8900, 8830, 8820, 8800, 8330 8320 8300 and 8310; the app can also be downloaded at www.stitcher.com/dl. It is still not available for Windows Mobile smartphone platforms.
Stitcher was first introduced to Apple App Store in August of 2008, as Stitcher made the native app available in private beta to 100 testers. The native app provided the same interface as the web application along with features such as automatic updates and "interrupt handling" during phone calls.
Notes and references
- ↑ .[http://landing.stitcher.com/press/4_7_09.pdf Stitcher, Inc. Announces Partnerships with Leading Publishers and Content Providers: Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal Radio Network, Fox News Radio, Air America Media, POLITICO, IGN.com, TechCrunch, Quick & Dirty Tips and AOL Weblogs including Engadget, Switched, The Unofficial Apple Weblog and Joystiq.]
- ↑ TechCrunch: Stitcher Streams Customized Audio Feeds to Your iPhone
- ↑ .Stitcher Radio Streaming
- ↑ .CNET: First Look at Stitcher.
- ↑ .TechCrunch: Stitcher Streams Customized Audio Feeds to Your iPhone
- ↑ Editors Picks on Stitcher
- ↑ iPhone killer-app is letting users choose software
- ↑ Download Stitcher onto your device
- ↑ TechCrunch: Stitcher Launches Personalized Radio iPhone App In Private Beta