Our smartphones are a daily source of news and entertainment. Whether we’re listening to business or tech news, comedy, sports or entertainment, we want our favorite content to be delivered seamlessly to our devices. Enter Stitcher Radio.
One of the featured apps in HTC Get Started, Stitcher delivers your latest news and podcasts directly to your phone every day. I recently spent some time with Beth Murphy, Chief Marketing Officer of Stitcher, to learn more about how Stitcher introduces the world of talk radio to our smartphones
Leigh Momii (LM): What is Stitcher?
Beth Murphy (BM): Stitcher is an app in the Google Play store that streams the latest in news, sports, talk, and entertainment radio, from over 15,000 radio shows and podcasts, to your smartphone. Further, we’ve been able to integrate Stitcher with Ford, GM, Mercedes and BMW vehicles to make it easier to access the content you want from wherever you are.
LM: Stitcher recently re-launched the Android version. Can you talk about the Android re-launch, how that went and what your vision is for the Android version of Stitcher?
BM: Stitcher has had been on Android since 2009 – but early this year we launched a brand-new Android app, rebuilt from the ground up. We wanted to create a content discovery and listening experience optimized to take full advantage of the Android native UI, featuring more intuitive navigation, browsing and discovery features. This holistic approach included:
- Complete Interaction and Visual Redesign now makes navigation easier by using Android’s Action Bar.
- Improved Performance and Stability to deliver a smooth listening experience.
- Smart Station makes it easy to discover new shows by making recommendations based on your listening activity.
- Improved Browsing experience let’s you review your list of recommendations without interrupting the listening experience.
- Rich Notifications makes it easy to control playback, pausing and tracking without unlocking your phone for customers running Jelly Bean.
LM: One of the first things I notice about Stitcher is the great design of the app. At HTC, beautiful design is something we value. Can you talk a bit about how you went about re-designing the Android app.
BM: We used the new Google Design Guidelines as a starting point, with the intent of creating a beautiful and functional Android app that takes advantage of “holo” UI principles. As Google and their partners continue to improve user interface principles for Android, Stitcher will be working in lockstep to give listeners an even more fluid experience.
LM: The latest Stitcher update on Android includes HTC Media Link HD integration. What was involved in integrating?
BM: We know that while a lot of Stitcher listening happens on the go (commuting, exercising, traveling), there are also many listeners who use Stitcher at home. We saw integrating with the Media Link as a chance to give listeners on HTC devices the ability to seamlessly play on demand radio right from their TVs.
The Media Link integration was pretty seamless. Using the Media Link HD API (part of the HTC OpenSense SDK), we were able to synchronize our custom playback controls with the Media Link playback state and provide the user with a good experience – the user is able to navigate around the app, and use our in-app mini-player and our rich notification to control the content playing with Media Link. Currently, users are able to send content to their Media Link receiver and control playback, but in the future we hope to take advantage of some of the more advanced features offered by MediaLink HD.
Check out HTC Dev to learn more about integrating your app with the HTC OpenSense SDK and how to get your app featured in HTC channels.