National Public Radio, or NPR, has released a version of its mobile app for iOS and Android aimed at curating the best listening experience across a variety of categories.
Like Pandora does for music, NPR One offers a default set of listening topics, from news to entertainment to politics, and over time learns what a user enjoys or doesn’t enjoy listening to. Using a listener’s ZIP code as a basis for public stream, the app intertwines local with on-demand content to ensure variety.
Much of NPR’s on-demand content can be heard using traditional podcast apps, and the organization already offers iOS and Android apps that stream live feeds as well as popular shows like All Songs Considered and Fresh Air, but like Stitcher, NPR One combines the programming into one feed.
Users can search for shows and other on-demand stories and mark them as “interesting,” which helps the app determine what plays next. It’s a system that has worked for recommendation engines like The Echo Nest and should work well for a closed ecosystem like NPR.
The app is well-designed, and is optimized for both Android tablets and iPad.