The XM Sirius merger has rekindled my interest in listening to satellite radio over the internet. 5 of the 6 pre-sets in my truck are former Sirius stations: Outlaw Country (12), the Led Zeppelin Channel (39), 1st Wave (44), Classic Vinyl (46) and the Grateful Dead Channel (57). Deep Tracks (40) is the only former XM channel to keep its place.
Until today, the main obstacle to listening to XM over the net was the burdensome login and navigation process at XM’s steaming site. I want- no, I demand- a simple one or two touch process to get the music started. The Pandora desktop application is the best example of this so far. One click and I’m listening to my excellent Pandora station.
Pandora’s my baby, but sometimes I want to drill down into a specific genre or a mix other than the great alt. country genome I have mapped at Pandora.
Now, thanks to the free Lenware XM Radio Player Desktop Edition (here’s the developer’s site, for donations and support), I can easily crank up my XM stations and navigate to and between my favorite stations.
The first time you launch the player, it asks for your XM credentials. After that, the player remembers your name and password. I’ve been flicking back and forth between the Grateful Dead Channel and 1st Wave while typing this.
The Lenware player lets you easily navigate between genres via the tabs at the top, and within genres via the list in the main window. You can add your favorite stations to the Favorites list with the click of a mouse. The player is snappy, with almost no delay when changing stations. You can see what’s playing on other channels as well, so you can song surf if you want.
This is a fine piece of software. I highly recommend it.