LiveXLive

Last modified
Friday, February 14, 2020
Category

Description of App

Slacker Radio is all about reconnecting you with what makes radio great. Our team of curators have built hundreds of stations that will deliver the hits,
surprise you, and keep you completely looped in to what's happening in the worlds of music, news and entertainment. Our hosts will keep you company along
the way, including guest-commentators ranging from John Legend to Tyler Oakley to Florida Georgia Line.

While we start with an expert team of curators who create exceptional stations, the final music flow is dictated by the songs and artists that you "heart"
and "ban." This interactivity even extends into news and sports programming from ABC, ESPN and more.

Listen free for as long as you like or upgrade to a Slacker subscription for ad-free listening, unlimited song skips, offline play and on-demand access
to your favorite songs, albums and artists.

Slacker Radio…radio that listens to you.

 

Version

6.0.63

Free or Paid

Free

Apple Watch Support

Not Known

Device(s) App Was Tested On

iPhone

iOS Version

8.1.2

Accessibility Comments

There are a lot of unlabeled button through out the app. If you have the patience and time. It can be used.

 

VoiceOver Performance

VoiceOver reads most page elements.

Button Labeling

Most buttons are clearly labeled.

Usability

There are some accessibility issues with this app, but it can still be used if you are willing to tolerate these issues and learn how to work around them.

Developer's Twitter Username

@SlackerRadio

Recommendations

0 people have recommended this app

Options

Comments

Submitted by Adaria on Monday, March 14, 2011

From what I noticed the only button that seems unlabeled at all is the Play/Pause button. This button lies between the time elapsed/total time of song and the Play Next button when swiping. There is also a number next to the next button, this indicates how many skips you have left in the hour. This of course no longer shows or matters if you have the premium subscription. I have used Slacker a long time and yes the site is flash so not screen reader friendly. The quality is great and the price per month is reasonable for no commercials and unlimited skips. A wonderful app for music lovers.

Submitted by AnonyMouse on Monday, April 9, 2012

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

In reply to by Adaria

Decided to give this a try myself with the recent release of 3.8. Appears now to be compatible with the iPad and the iPhone. For the most part it appears to work rather well. There are bit of buttons that are unlabeled. Makes it a bit difficult to use when the music is playing. I had to relabel the unlabel button using the IOS 5.x method but must warn you that there quite a few of them.

Submitted by David Goodwin👨‍🦯 on Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

This has just been updated and there's been a complete overhaul of its interface (which always sets off alarms bells for us VoiceOver users).

I don't have access to the app here in the UK, but I'm hearing reports that it now has major accessibility issues and that VoiceOver users are being warned not to update!

Can anybody confirm that this is the case?

Submitted by Terra Syslo on Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The app is not accessible any longer with the latest update. I cannot get any stations to come up when clicking on categories, most of the buttons aren't labeled. I should have never updated. Is there a way to go back to a previous version of an app? I don't have a backup on my computer. i will need to cancel my premium subscription if there is no way ot go back to a more accessible version or they don't fix the current one. I have written to the developers.

Hello David, The interface makes it very difficult to use. There are more unlabel buttons but navigation in the app itself is doable. The main problem is trying to get things to play as you want it to. My understanding is that there are all sort of eye-popping menus sliding in and out. There are some trick you can do but you must be fast with your fingers. For example if I hit a particular station with my Laternative Rock station. You have a very short time to go down to the bottom of the page to hit that Play button. You have to be fast and I mean like 2 seconds or so. Any longer this menu disappear and you have to do this over again. I had a friend with eye sight and she was able to tell me in what was going on on the screen itself. So this is how I know that things do pop up and allow you do things. So if you get a friend that can help you in figuring things out it could be doable but I find it difficult to use. Quite a shame I must say. You do NOT want to update your Slacker to v4.0.119.

Submitted by Alex Marositz on Monday, February 25, 2013

The latest update to version 4.0.126 makes it impossible to select stations using Voiceover. Some of the buttons are not clearly labled and focus is lost when selecting a station.

Submitted by Jesse Anderson on Friday, March 1, 2013

Hello. I wanted to post more information on the newest Slacker update here as well. Previous posters are correct. The new version is not very accessible with VoiceOver. Most buttons are unlabeled throughout the interface. with sighted assistance, many of these can be labeled. However, there is one major problem that prevents VO users from using this app well. I'll try to explain as best I can. On many screens, like the Genre Stations, My Stations Page, etc, the user is presented with many icons that seem to look like album covers. A sighted user would be able to swipe left and right on each row, because each row contains many stations. When tapping one of these rows with VO enabled, VO speaks each station as one single item. You can double tap, and hurry to find the Play button. This only will play the first station in the horizontal list. For instance, prior to the update, I had created 4 stations. I can only access the first station with VO enabled. I have to turn VO off, and use my remaining vision to try finding the other station I want. The Genres page has loads of these horizontal rows of stations. The first row may be popular stations. The second row down may be all rock stations, or all another genre. The problem is, it seems impossible to access anything but the first item in each row using VoiceOver. This makes accessing and browsing stations virtually impossible. I did contact the developer about this, and explained pretty much what I did here, and also included a link to Apple's resource for creating accessible IOS apps. It took forever for them to reply, and finally yesterday, they did reply. Unfortunately it's pretty clear they didn't even read my message. They just sent a canned response that had nothing to do with my problem. I'll post Slacker's reply exactly at the end of this comment. I hate to see companies not actually read well written problems or reports from users. I'm guessing my message never even made it to a developer. What annoys me the most is, prior to the update, I was really starting to love the app for all its features and more variety of songs per artist. I even paid the $3.99 or whatever the price for the ad-free subscription. I will be canceling this immediately if I don't hear anything positive on the accessibility front. I'd love to see Slacker be a campaign of the month very soon. I really want to continue using and liking this service. And here's their official reply. enjoy the tips that have nothing to do with the reported problem... Charles B (Slacker Radio) Feb 28 16:42 (PST) Thank you for contacting Slacker Radio Support Jessean1, First you will want to make sure that you have updated your iOs device to 6.1 and you can check this by connecting to iTunes and then hitting the Check for Updates button on the General tab for the device home screen through iTunes. Also you will want to make sure that you have the latest version of the Slacker app 4.0.126 on your device. If you are on the AOL Radio iOS app it should be 3.0.4.2. This could be caused by a few factors. It could be a loss of signal in the connection you have and a reboot of the device could correct this. First reboot the device. To reboot the Apple device you will need to hold down the Home and Sleep/Wake button for about 20 seconds. Second, it could be a situation where the app is currently in a bad state and a delete and reinstall is all that it needs to correct itself. Lastly, go into the settings and then change the Audio Quality to the lowest setting and then retry to listen. Best Regards, Charles B Slacker Radio Support

Submitted by James Dean on Friday, March 1, 2013

That's the version that I found most accessible. I have no way to get it back and greatly miss the accessibility. I just renewed my subscription again and was disappointed to find that while I can access the slide-out menus that were mentioned in another comment, Voiceover does not do a good job of reading or interacting with them, so far as I can tell. I could describe specific things if I could contact the developer somehow.

Submitted by James Dean on Friday, March 1, 2013

Yep, it does indeed appear that, sadly, Charles did not read your well put-together message. Nothing to do with accessibility. All standard "let's pretend we know how to fix something we really don't," junk. I hope your message goes somewhere else. Write different messages. Keep sending messages. What address did you use to try to contact them? Please, could you post it here so others can do the same? Thanks

Submitted by Jesse Anderson on Saturday, March 2, 2013

In reply to by James Dean

I believe my original message was sent directly through the app. I managed to find the Feedback link and just used that. I did reply to that helpful message above and explained things a bit more clearly. I also kindly informed them that they obviously didn't read my original message. The good news is, I got another reply pretty quickly yesterday, and I'm hoping things will improve soon. Again, no specific answers, but at least they acknowledged it is a problem and should be fixed in the future. I hope so. Here's the new reply: Dear Jessean1, This is a known issue with the current version of the Slacker app. We expect this to be fixed in a future version of the Slacker app. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. Best regards, Charles Slacker Radio Customer Support

Submitted by AnonyMouse on Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team

Your voice was heard! Thank you to all of you and to the team of Slacker. As you will now notice one of the things they have fixed are the Voice Over accessibility functionality. It is a great start for them but there are still more that they can do. We still have a few unlabel button in and around various places. Mostly in the Play mode.

So keep letting Slacker know that we appreciate their effort and love to see this even more accessible!

What's New in Version 4.0.163

This build addresses several issues with the previous version and adds the following new functionality:

-Improved accessibility with VoiceOver
-Reintroduction of "Ban Artist" on the flip side of the Now Playing cover art.

 

Submitted by Jesse Anderson on Wednesday, April 10, 2013

In reply to by AnonyMouse

Yes, the newest update is significantly better with VoiceOver, and most buttons and areas of the app work very well. I've been using slacker again now quite a bit since yesterday's update. I rather like slacker's solution to the album interface problem. Now it works similarily to a tree view. Double tapping a main category will expand that category, and any sub-items will appear below. I'll definitely be updating my app store review.

Submitted by James Dean on Wednesday, April 10, 2013

This version is indeed much better. I do like the treeview-esq approach. There is only one problem I am having. I can't seem to get VoiceOver to pull up any new artists, songs or albums when I try to do a search. Here are the steps I follow. Maybe someone can tell me a different way to do this until Slacker fixes this issue. I double-tap the search field that is located near the top of the main screen of the app. I type in an artist and double-tap search. I see the buttons that allow me to filter the results (artist, song, album, etc.) but no artist names come up that I can find with Voiceover, no matter if I swipe left/right or move my finger around the screen. Has anyone gotten this to work reliably/at all? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

Submitted by Juliette on Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Hello, I had success if I typed in an artist and just touched the screen without hitting the search button to dismiss the keyboard. I had the same problem as you if I clicked the search button to hide the keyboard.

Submitted by James Dean on Thursday, April 11, 2013

In reply to by Juliette

That is the secret! When you search for an artist, song or album, do not double-tap search in the bottom right hand corner. Instead, touch the center top of the screen slightly below your status bars. Depending on where your finger lands, you may find headings that say things like "best match." etc. Swiping right at this point will show you the searched for artist and the year of its debut. Sometimes, you must double-tap this line before double-tapping the line found a couple swipes to the right which just says the artist name in order to find such options as "add to station." Double-tap "add to station," followed by "add to new station." Name your station as you used to do in previous accessible versions, then choose save. This of course works a bit differently than in previous versions and it's a bit more involved, but at least it works. Also, has anybody else experienced some of your custom stations disappearing? Between 3.8.45 and all the updating to what is now the current version (4.0.163,) a few of mine were deleted. Using the steps outlined above, I was able to get them back, but it's still strange that it kept most of them, only deleting three or four out of about thirty. It could have something to do with the times that I let the Slacker Radio Plus expire during the app's inaccessible times, but I really don't know.

Submitted by Terra Syslo on Saturday, April 13, 2013

In reply to by James Dean

I am having a lot of annoying issues with the newest version. For example, in my stations I cannot figure out how to unban songs. I also can't get it to display more than a few artists or songs when doing a search. Double tapping on artists or songs button doesn't help. I really do not like the new interface. It seems like more steps just to get to what you are trying to accomplish, even just getting stations to play. Very frustrating.

Submitted by Scott Hegle on Saturday, April 13, 2013

I am unable to fine tune any of the Slacker stations. Does anyone have a work around for this? With VoiceOver running, swiping up or down on the slider does nothing, and using the roter does not allow me to change to the adjust value setting. Any luck from anyone else in doing this?

With the release of iOS 7, the developers changed the interface of this application. It appears that there are pictures to represent each station and so it is difficult, if not impossible to get a particular station to play because you need to tap on the artwork associated with it. Anyone who is using an older iOS version will not be affected since the application only updates to this new interface with iOS 7. Hopefully, we will be able to discuss this with the developers so that our campaigning will not have been in vain.

I initially thought much of the new interface was again broken as well. The small buttons near the bottom of the main screen, near the My Stations button are indeed unlabeled, and I have no idea what they are. However, when in the My Music area, or browsing any list of stations, it is possible, but rather inconvenient, to access stations. VoiceOver users cannot tap or slide their finger over one of these graphical albums that represent stations. However they can be accessed by starting near the top of the window and flicking right. VoiceOver does then recognize these buttons and seems to read most of them correctly. I was able to browse My Stations, recently played, and an artist search results page in this way. Yes it's clunky, and I will be writing to recommend another VoiceOver fix. I recommend other users do the same. Meanwhile, the app is still usable, all be it a bit clunky.

Hmmm. I'm not sure if I'm not flicking properly but I have difficulty finding the stations. I spent about five minutes attempting to do so in both rock and country. Have you been able to figure out how to download/cache stations? I haven't yet figured this out and since my office doesn't have Internet access, I find this feature convenient and the main reason I use Slacker over some of the others out there. I'll definitely write a note regarding some of these issues. Thanks for the assistance.

I just checked my app updates this morning, and saw a Slacker update, that even mentioned VoiceOver accessibility. From what I've tried so far, the app is much, much better again. Most buttons and other items seem to be labeled, and the app is easy to navigate again. They seemed to get rid of the tiled album cover views they used all over in the IOS 7 update. Now when viewing a list of stations, favorites, or search results, items are displayed in a vertical list, with a small album thumbnail image on the left, and artist and other information in text on the right, very similar to the Amazon Cloud Player app. Now hopefully they won't break it again in a future update...

Submitted by AnonyMouse on Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Member of the AppleVis Editorial Team
Thanks to Jesse in the above comment in pointing this out for us! What's New in Version 5.0.244 Fixes and improvements, including the addition of VoiceOver (helps you navigate through Slacker if you have trouble seeing the screen)

Submitted by sockhopsinger on Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Hello, I am running Slacker on an iPhone 5s with the latest iOS and the latest Slacker version. I am wondering if Slacker is useable with Airplay? I can't seem to find an Airplay button when the music is playing. Thanks.

Submitted by sockhopsinger on Thursday, December 18, 2014

If you have not done so, do not update your Slacker app. In the past couple of days, Slacker has released two updates. Their developers, in their wisdom, have broken it once again. IT is virtually impossible to scroll and find music you want to listen to. Also, finding the refresh buttons for the album content have become much harder. There are also several buttons that do not register when you double tap on them. I guess Slacker subscribes to the motto of the 2010s, "if it ain't broke, break it!"

Submitted by sockhopsinger on Thursday, December 18, 2014

I must apologize for my extremely negative post above regarding Slacker's accessibility. However, there are certain apps that bother me more when said accessibility is broken. This app happens to be one of them. It's not an excuse just an explanation as to why the comments above are so harsh.

Submitted by Tiffany J. Kim on Monday, January 12, 2015

I have a love-hate relationship with this app. I love it because of the amount of music available to me. I also appreciate the fact that I can cache music on my phone and avoid high charges for using so much data. However, I hate (or at least, am strongly disgruntled by) the developers' tendency to break this app from time to time. I never know whether to update or not, and tend to be unlucky enough to either hit Update or have the IPhone set to automatically update my apps when this one undergoes a visual makeover which ends up making the app a challenge to use.
More frustrating than caching songs, though, is my inability to Fine Tune the stations I create. I can move the sliders for Related Artists, Favorite Songs, etc, but I don't know where the button is located to save my changes. This makes that part of the experience difficult. I will ask for some sighted assistance next time I am in proximity of a sighted colleague and provide some insights.
If there is an app that has a music caching feature that doesn't require me to pick out the individual songs and albums, and some way to fully customize stations, I would certainly love to hear about it.

Submitted by Jesse Anderson on Monday, January 12, 2015

In reply to by Tiffany J. Kim

I too have a love hate relationship with Slacker. I love being able to listen to random music, but also most full albums on demand with the paid service. I have discovered a lot of new music this way. the variety and lack of constant repeats is also a welcome difference.

I have once again E-mailed the developers to let them know about the VoiceOver problems. They did reply, and pretty much stated that yes, they are aware of the lack of accessibility in this version. Accessibility wasn't part of the initial release of this new interface update, but would be added again later.

This approach is quite frustrating. I love the service, and am even willing to pay for the premium version. They know about accessibility because I and other users have reported problems in the past. The past few major versions of Slacker have all majorly broken accessibility, but thankfully have eventually fixed most issues. You'd think, after having to go back and consistently fix problems after each update, they would finally learn and include at least a base level of accessibility in a new interface update. They are obviously quite aware that VO users like and use their app.

Devs are aware of the accessibility issues, and will hopefully release a fix in the near future. I really, really want to love Slacker, but with each version breaking VO support, I'm tempted to drop my premium subscription.

Submitted by sockhopsinger on Monday, January 12, 2015

It's not perfect, and I do like Slacker better ... when it works ... but I went back to Rhapsody. The plus for Rhapsody is that they have a totally accessible player for Windows. Of course, the downside is that they don't have a Mac app, and their iOS app is clunky at best. It's annoying to have to keep jumping back and forth between these two.

Submitted by Tiffany J. Kim on Sunday, January 18, 2015

As promised, I took some time to explore the Fine Tune feature with sighted assistance. While the station is playing, if you double tap that button labeled "icon elip", you can then get to the Fine Tune button. At this point, you'll need to double tap then hold when you're at the particular slider(s) you want to manipulate. Then you will need to slide your finger across the screen as VO lets you know the approximate percentage. Slacker doesn't give you the ability to change one to a random percentage (e.g. 28% popularity), so it will end up going to one of Slacker's pre-determined intervals. Once you are done fiddling with the sliders in this fashion, you'll need to find Fine Tune. It's located towards the very top of the screen (about where the clock, battery display, and signal bars normally are), on the right half of the display. You'll need to double tap and hold on Fine Tune, then swipe right and release. You will then end up back at the Now Playing screen showing the title of the track currently playing, Heart, Dislike, and Next buttons. If all went according to plan, you will have saved your changes and your station will be more to your liking.
I hope this helps anyone still holding out hope for this app.

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