Way way-a-ways back, long before Android existed, I used to own a Nokia N95 and for me it was the best phone in the world ever. One of the reasons I loved it was for the excellent Nokia Internet Radio app. It was made by Nokia themselves and it was a superb application that, in typical Nokia style, was never pushed into the spotlight like it deserved to be and it remained largely ignored.
One of the first things I looked for when I got my HTC Desire was the Android equivalent and I found it in DroidLive, now known as the unpronounceable (and therefore much harder to remember) XiiaLive Lite. XiiaLive is an app that gives you free access to the thousands of internet radio stations that make up the SHOUTcast.com network, whatever genre of music you’re looking for (not forgetting the talk, sports and community broadcasts) SHOUTcast and it’s directory of over 35,000 stations has more than likely got what you’re looking for. With so much content to deal with XiiaLive does a great job of helping you stay on top of it all within the confines of your Android handset’s small lcd screen.
The first thing you’ll notice is the UI, it’s pretty striking stuff with black backgrounds and glowing text, it may not be to every-one’s taste and it’s slightly tricky to navigate your way around the app at first but it operates at a quick pace and once you’re settled in you are good to go.
From the home screen you can browse the top stations, genres or perform a search as well as browse your favourites, history, settings and tracks you have previously tagged. Performing searches bring back countless results complete with information on current listeners and bit-rate; once you’ve found something you like a single click will take you straight into the listening screen. This screen contains pretty much everything you need, there’s on screen volume controls, track details, a handy ‘timer’ function that closes the app after a certain time (perfect for listening when you’re tucked up in bed) and a ‘tagme’ button. If you hear a track you like you can press ‘tagme’ and it’s details are saved to the ‘tagged’ list of songs which is accessible from the main menu. There’s also a simple one bar widget to throw up on your home screen which lets you choose or play/stop your station of choice.
Streaming works as well as you’d expect over wi-fi and even on 3G I could go for at least 30 minutes without a single dropout although this is more down to network reception rather than the app itself. In the wake of ‘PowerAmp‘ it’s a shame that there’s no EQ but this doesn’t ruin the app for me. The paid version of XiiaLive claims to cut out the adverts but in all the time I’ve usedn the Lite version I’ve not heard any ads at all, maybe that’s more to do with the stations that I’m listening to.
In conclusion XiiaLive Lite is an app that’s worth downloading, it’s ideal as an alternative source of music away from what you may already have stored on your handset.
Link : Install via AppBrain