my new favorite ride-along toy, Pandora…

As much as I love technology and new gadgets, it might come as a bit of a surprise that I’m not normally what you might call an early adopter for the latest and coolest toys. In fact, if anything I’m typically more of a wait a year or two until half the people have moved on and then give it a try-kind of adopter, if anything!

My most recent case in point for this scenario is with Pandora, the streaming radio service that allows you to customize a playlist by specifying types of artists and even specific songs that you like. Up until two days ago, I’d never actually used it myself … I’d referred my wife to it when she was looking for something to workout with because I’d always heard great things about it from fellow technology geeks, however I’d never gone so far as to actually signup for the app or install it on my iPhone until we were driving back from our Christmas in Michigan and I found myself growing increasingly tired of having to constantly scan for new radio stations as the few worthwhile ones in each region would slowly fade out of range…

A couple of things impressed me with Pandora – first, that it didn’t drop a signal once while we were on the road, even when driving through the mountains of Tennessee. It technically had a couple of hiccups, but I honestly think that those were more my wife’s car getting finicky with the iPod USB connection than Pandora’s fault. Anyways, I don’t know if it actually pushes the entire song at once to avoid problems or maybe just does some serious caching, but knowing how much my 3G speeds on my phone can be when we’re moving at 70 mph, I was impressed!

The other thing was simply that with one click, Pandora managed to single-handedly replace my beloved local ’80s radio station that abruptly changed format into a dance station last summer, and frankly that’s why once we got home I was quick to install it on my own iPhone as well. I mean, I’ve been saying that I’m going to sit down and make a playlist of all my favorite ’80s songs for years … even back when 101.5 The Point still existed … so to finally have a reliable, easy to use way to rock out to my Duran Duran and Survivor in my car again is a godsend in and of itself!

Eventually I want to play around with it some more and maybe locate stations for some of my other musical tastes like modern rock and island tunes. Before I took over driving and requested the sounds of the ’80s, my wife was actually enjoying a similar blast from the past listening to the old ’90s favorites that we both remembered from high school. It’s actually a pretty cool, little app, so I’m glad that I finally got around to getting on board with this one… 😉

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