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Interactive Annual 19:
Tablets/Handheld Devices

NPR Music for iPad

Launch App

“This simple and effective application is a great use of the tablet as a complement to one’s radio-listening experience. Content is easy to navigate, search or filter, and I loved that I could easily create a tailored experience and yet never forget this was NPR.” —Sophie Henry

“A great app with a great UI and well-curated content.”
—Madison Wharton Marks


Overview: The NPR Music for iPad app is a visually-stunning multimedia magazine that reimagines exclusive NPR Music content for a new generation of listeners. Its streamlined design showcases hundreds of public radio music stations, album previews, live performances and Tiny Desk Concert videos. The app delivers the ultimate immersive music discovery experience, seamlessly combining editor picks with personalized recommendations through an innovative gesture-based playlist and the ability to create a custom playlist available for offline listening.

  • • To celebrate the launch of the app, NPR Music held a live concert in New York City featuring The Shins and the app offered exclusive access to live audio and video streaming of the event.
  • • NPR Music for iPad offers access to exclusive concerts and festival coverage via live video and audio feeds and a directory of more than 100 public radio stations featuring music handpicked by the country’s best DJs.
  • • Each playlist item is a card that can be dragged and dropped for reordering; its “mini-view” offers a visual shortcut to a specific story in the playlist.

Comments by Benjamin Dauer and Jennifer Oh

What was the most challenging aspect of the project? “NPR music creates an incredible amount of content across many different genres and media types. Our biggest challenge was finding engaging and intuitive ways to encourage exploration of this content without it being overwhelming.”

Were there any specific demands that made the project easier or harder? “From its inception, this project generated a lot of buzz and excitement at NPR. We received many eager and enthusiastic contributions from different levels within the organization. We ruthlessly edited to stay sharply focused on the user, while feeling tremendous self-imposed pressure to ‘make something awesome.’”

How did this project compare with others you've worked on in the past? “It was the first NPR app to be completely conceived, designed and developed in-house.”

Credits

Max Pfennighaus, interactive designer
Chris Koth, user experience designer
Benjamin Dauer, lead designer
David Wright, design director
Jennifer Oh/Amy Schriefer, strategy
Ben Hands, developer
Stephanie Oura, project manager
NPR (Washington, DC), project design and development/client


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