Friday, 25 December 2009

KryKey Mobile Radio - First Look

by Doug Sanders

It was Christmas today and I got a present for something I didn't even know existed until today. As I usually do I invite a few people around each year for Christmas drinks, this year one of those was Mr-X who is one of the team members from KryKey Web Radio. I answered the door and he was listening via his mobile phone music. I asked how much music he ad on the phone, he said none, and he was using and part of the test team for KryKey Mobile Radio and was listening to one of the radio stations Red Babe. He then handed me his pone and said have a look as it was pretty cool. He mentioned that it was a very early stage of development app.
On the screen the now familiar KryKey Web Radio logo with the large words saying "TAP TO START". Also was an advertisement for Diet Coke and four large buttons that made up the navigation bar. These buttons are from left to right, 'home', 'find/search', 'favorites' and 'top 10'. I tapped the logo and was taken to what is the 'home page'. Besides the same advertisement and navigation bar, there are also six screen-wide buttons: (1) find radio stations, (2) your favorites, (3) radio stations near you, (4) top 10, (5) featured radio stations, and (6) KryKey Facebook.
This is were a listener can find a radio station by different filters, like song name, radio station name, genre, city, country, DJ name. The results screen display the radio stations (logo, name, play button). Mr-X said this was changing on the next version and will only display the logo for each. I scrolled down the screen using my finger and onto each following page of results.

On the Player in this App is a button to save the radio station your listening to, as a favorite. What I saw was it only saves 10 radio stations. I asked Mr-X why only 10? He explained it was to do with keeping bandwidth and memory usage low and there was no plans to increase the number.

Geo-tagging comes to web radio, with the ability now to select this feature and it checks your GPS location to radio stations on the KryKey Network and then displays eight per page. Anymore radio stations are on the next page and are accessed by scrolling using my finger.

TOP 10
The Top 10 KryKey Web Radio stations are displayed here. Playing any of them is by tapping their logo.

There was ten KryKey Web Radio stations being displayed which are chosen via the company. To start playing any of these tap the logo.

Tap this button and you are taken to the KryKey Web Radio Facebook fan page via the browser on the phone.

* * * *

I tapped the logo for the number one radio station on the KryKey Network, Red Babe, and the player was displayed. Within seconds the music started playing. The Player had the radio station's logo, it's name along the top bar and there was also a button for adding/saving the radio station to your favorites. Next was displayed the current Artist and Song being played. Under that what Artist and Song was next. This is similar on the desktop version. Mute, Volume Control, time played and total time for what was being played is then displayed. Under this was a tab with large letters saying CHAT, and also two circles, one green and one red. The green one was on. Mr-X said this was to indicate whether someone is in the radio stations Studio. I tapped the tab and it slid open to display a chat room. This did exactly like it's desktop counter part. Live Chat between listeners, themselves and the DJ in the Studio. Also there is under the Chat Tab, and this button pops up a screen with currently four buttons, these are for sending to the listeners Facebook or MySpace or Twitter accounts what radio station and song the listener is listening to.
Over the next hour I listened to the music from the radio station via plugging the mobile phone into my hifi system. The stream was constant and a good quality. I was impressed. Mr-X said early 2010 you will see the first public-beta testing commence and those selected will be via the KryKey Facebook page. He said you will see it on all mobile platforms and would be accessible via the internet in the phones browser and again Flash will be required for the web version.

First impressions was it was cool and going to be popular I think. I especially liked the geo-tagging feature to hear radio stations in your area.

The next report on this is when I get to be part of the public-beta test in 2010.

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