The most interesting iPhone app update to me is TuneIn radio – they now have a car ui mode

One of the more recent iPhone app updates that caught my eye was from TuneIn Radio. TuneIn Radio simply streams radio stations that make their feed available on the internet. It does a good job of discovery both from location and genre. They also have an iPad version that takes advantage of the bigger screen real estate. However that’s not why I’m mentioning the app. A couple weeks ago they introduced a car mode. They’ve taken the essentials of the app to a whole new level of simplification. When apps first came out for the iPhone there was a movement suggesting that they should only do one or two things really well because of the small screen size. As designers get used to the screen they’re figuring out ways to add a lot of stuff (for better or worse). With TuneIn Radio’s car mode they’ve brought the essentially features to the bare minimum. There’s four large buttons to find a station and a large window to display what is currently on. For a driver this in theory makes the decision easier and hopefully faster so they can pay attention to the road. The people behind this app seem to get the user behavior depending on how they’re using it.

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