I don’t listen to the radio. I haven’t for years. I got my driver’s license in spring of ’03 and my car stereo with a CD player that Christmas.
Then in ’06 my family surprised me with an iPod nano and I quickly looked for a way to get it working in my car. By the time I bought one of those receivers that plugs into the cigarette lighter I had dropped the iPod nano at school, essentially breaking it.
Come April ’06 I managed to scrap the money together to buy an iPod Video, an iPod would have until it finally crashed and burned in April of 2012.
In January of 2011 my car was destroyed in a car accident. The car I was given and still drive was not as good as the car I had owned but it had one advantage over my former car. It had a line in. No longer was I bound by shoddy radio signal to pick up my iPod on it nor was I bound by the eighty minute limit of CD’s.
In April of 2012 that iPod Video finally stopped working. I went on to replace that with an iPod classic and then replaced my Droid X with an iPhone 4S. In hindsight, I should of replaced my iPod Video with a larger iPhone instead of buying a smaller iPhone 4S and an iPod Classic. I honestly did not think I would love my iPhone as much as I do now.
This brings us to last week when we discovered my car had a leak of brake fluid and I had to use my father’s car to get around. He had a audiobook in his stereo in the exact spot he left off so I did not want to remove the CD. Instead I pressed the function button to the radio.
I want to make this clear. Yes, I’ve heard the radio in other people’s cars but in the time since I owned a car, a car stereo, an iPod, and a smart phone I never turn the radio on.
I also want to make it clear, I’m not stupid, I know how a radio works. I didn’t look at this machine and I think “How do I work this device?” like a luddite. I had in fact, been in the passenger seat for years trying to wrestle control over the radio from my father just as my sister did before me.
Also, we’re talking about analog radio not any kind of satellite radio. So when I turned the radio on, searching the station for something to listen to I was blown away how terrible it was.
They just play the same songs over and over again, I thought. Why would anyone choose to listen to the radio when they could play music of their own choosing on so many devices. Don’t even get me started about the quality. I was better off turning off the radio and just placing my iPhone in a cupholder playing music.
I did just that. Which led me to conclusions that I’ve been spoiled by digital music. Sure, some people have even better car stereo that have USB slot to plug their devices in but there are probably still people driving around listening to analog radio.
I’m sure too, that there are great radio stations out there in areas with great reception but it’s not anywhere I live. Some people wanting to hear the same songs over and over again, browsing the stations for their favorite songs. Sometimes too many choices, which digital music can give you, is overwhelming so why not let someone else be in control?
Think about it. iTunes, Last.FM, Pandora, Amazon… I’m sure there are others I can’t think of right now. For someone like my mother, who has difficulty with technology that can be mindblowing. Turning on the radio? Simple, hasn’t changed in years. I, however, like a choice and quality music while I drive. The Radio is not for me.
Don’t even get me started with talk radio. Google “top” or “best” with “podcasts” and tell me to listened to talk radio. I’m covered.