Monday, June 28, 2010

Pandora in Your Car

I am a big fan of Pandora (the streaming Internet radio service).

Recently, I purchased a new vehicle that came with with a nice stereo system.  The stereo system supports auxiliary input (via a headphone jack – 3.5mm) and Bluetooth input.

I went out and purchased a little T-Mobile myTouch 3G Slide.  It is running the Android operating system from Google.

There is a Pandora app that you can download from the Market to your phone.  It’s a free download.

Once installed, I can listen to Pandora on my phone.  Since my phone has Bluetooth and a headphone jack, I can listen to Pandora in my car (as long as I’m within a T-Mobile data area).

My one stumbling point was to get my Android based phone to quit trying to use Bluetooth for the Pandora audio.  With my car’s integrated Bluetooth for hands free talking, it likes pairing up with my phone.

Android apparently doesn’t do very well when trying to pair in two modes at the same time.  You have a “media” mode and a “phone” mode.  My car wants to pair in both modes.  This works fine for phone, but not for media.  If you are going to listen to media via Bluetooth, you almost have to disable the phone part.  I wanted to keep the phone part in case someone rings me whilst driving.

Yesterday, I finally figured out how to force my phone to pair only for the phone and not for media.  Basically, you go to the Bluetooth settings, find the Bluetooth devices, hold down the device in question until the menu pops up, click options, then uncheck the Media box.

Now I can listen to Pandora in my car via the headphone jack on my phone connected to the auxiliary jack in my car.  Unfortunately the quality of the audio doesn’t really jive with my 10 speaker Bose system.  It requires high quality audio to be appropriately enjoyed.

I’m thinking Sirius should team up with Pandora and allow me to listen to my Pandora stations via their high quality digital satellite feed.  Currently, it seems like Pandora and Sirius appear to be in some kind of competition mode, but I’d happily pay Sirius a monthly fee if they’d stream my Pandora music via their satellite feed.

Think about it!

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