Skip to main content

BBC Sounds app features its 18 national radio stations and lots of podcasts

While you may know the BBC for its TV hits from over the years (Monty Python, Doctor Who, Ricky Gervais’ The Office, Sherlock, and Peaky Blinders among them), the broadcasting giant actually began life as a radio station back in 1922.

True to its roots, it continues to pump out masses of audio-only content on a daily basis, with 18 national radio stations and 40 local ones covering a range of genres from music and comedy to sports and news. About 10 years ago, it launched its online iPlayer platform for both TV and radio, spinning off the latter for an iPlayer Radio app in 2012. More recently, it doubled down on its podcast efforts for a more convenient listening experience.

Related Videos

While the TV version of iPlayer is restricted to viewers in the U.K., almost all of its radio output is available worldwide. Even better, it’s free to use and free of ads.

With streaming services such as Spotify gaining in popularity in recent years, the BBC has been working on a new app that mirrors some of the functionality of these widely used services.

The result is BBC Sounds, a new app for iOS and Android that brings together its live broadcasts and podcasts while offering various ways to surface content of interest.

Features include a scroll dial for quick access to all of the BBC’s national stations, or you can tap All Stations to jump to any of the local offerings.

You can easily pick up from where you left off with Continue Listening, explore handpicked collections of podcasts and on-demand music shows to match your mood, and discover new audio via the Recommended For You section.

Of course, you can also browse numerous categories, among them technology, crime, science, hip-hop, and classical.

You can quickly add any individual episode or clip to My List for listening to later, subscribe to any podcast or program, and get a personalized feed of the latest episodes in My Sounds.

“BBC Sounds brings together our live and on-demand radio, music, and podcasts into a single personalized app,” said Dan Taylor-Watt, head of BBC iPlayer and BBC Sounds.

He added: “Every user’s experience of BBC Sounds will be unique as it’s designed to learn from your listening habits, providing one-tap access to the latest episodes of your favorite BBC podcasts and radio shows and introducing you to new audio you wouldn’t otherwise have discovered from the 80,000 (yes, really) hours available.”

BBC Sounds is expected to replace iPlayer Radio over time.

If you fancy exploring the BBC’s radio offerings via the web, you can access the site here.

Editors' Recommendations

BBC’s iPlayer Radio app adds mobile downloads for offline listening
BBC iPlayer

The BBC pumps out some 70,000 hours of radio programming a year covering a wide range of content from multiple music genres to news to drama and comedy. Its iPlayer catchup service has proved hugely popular with UK audiences since its launch in 2007, with up to 10 million TV and radio show streaming requests hitting its servers on a daily basis.

Now the BBC is making it even easier for radio fans to listen to their favourite audio content with an app update enabling downloads to smartphones and tablets. The update, for iOS and Android devices, is rolling out this week.

Read more
SoundCloud hasn’t shown Sony the money, and Sony is pulling a lot of its artists’ music
soundcloud ios playlist iphone streaming music app1 1024x640

There are a lot of places to listen to music for free online these days, and of all of them, SoundCloud is one of the hippest. It also seems to force ads on users a lot less than some of the other sites, like YouTube. Sony apparently has a problem with this.

Sony Music is reportedly pulling songs of many of its artists from SoundCloud due to “a lack of monetization opportunities,” according to Billboard.  Artists whose music is being removed include Adele, Kelly Clarkson, Passion Pit, and Leon Bridges.

Read more
The entire Beats headphone and earbuds range is discounted right now

Amazon is slashing prices on every single style and model of the Beats headphone line. From Buds to Powerbeats to over-the-ear headphone, every style is on sale. That's not to say that every color is discounted though. Check out all the headphone deals options below and grab the Beats you've always wanted.
Beats Studio Buds -- $120, was $150

The Beats Studio Buds offer the core essentials you could need from earbuds you might wish to take to the gym or use while on a run. They have a custom acoustic platform that promises powerful and balanced sound. More importantly for outdoor use, there are two distinct listening modes -- Active Noise Cancelling for blocking out all environmental sounds along with a Transparency mode for when you do need to interact with the world once more. It's ideal for those times when you want to zone out at the gym before remembering you need to speak to someone once in a while. There's up to eight hours of listening time with up to 24 hours when you combine the charging case. The earphones are also IPX4-rated for sweat and water resistance.

Read more