Chip listens to iHeartRadio on an internet radio called the Logitech Squeezebox. He's recently lost a lot of stations after an update, though. Leo has a hunch that many of those stations simply dropped out of streaming because of the cost of bandwidth for every single listener who is tuning in. It's a completely different model than broadcast because there's a hard cost. Its more like magazine publishing. But it could also be that iHeartRadio could be blocking the station.
Jerry says that the old "can-tenna" hack, where you focus the Wi-Fi signal through a pringles can could help getting better Wi-Fi coverage. Leo says that's not going to punch a digital hole through a concrete and rebar wall. It also would only work one way. It's a fun project, but not really ideal for practical use. Is there a radio app that gets the tech guy show?
Jack drives a tall Ford Transit van, and the antenna that he has won't clear his garage door. Leo says a lot of people have a whip antenna on a spring that can be tied to the back of the vehicle so it isn't any higher than the top of the roof. But Jack says the antenna mount is near the roof and even that is too tall. Leo says that increasingly we'll see fewer cars made with radios at all. Electric cars don't even come with AM radios because there's too much noise for it.
Jim is legally blind and uses an internet radio. He doesn't understand how to use it, though, and it buffers a lot. Leo says that Wi-Fi has a distance issue where the greater the distance, the weaker the system, and the slower the bandwidth. That's why Leo recommends plugging it directly into his router and he won't see nearly as much buffering. Leo recommends hardwire connections for any streaming device.
Mike wants to expand the range of his television by streaming via the internet. Leo says that since Mike wants to play internet radio through his home theater system, the Chromecast Audio would be the best option. He can then browse to the internet radio station (if supported) and then connect to it. Roku has a lot more stations available, but if he has to get a website up to stream with it, then Chromecast is the simplest way to go. If he wants to connect the computer to it, then using Miracast would work.
Dean wonders why people pay for Pandora and Spotify for their music when every song is on YouTube. Leo says that's a good question. YouTube also has it's own music service for $10 a month. It's really convenient. And many also use Apple Music as well. But if it's possible to just make a playlist and watch YouTube, then why not? The only thing is that he'd have to deal with ads.
Starting on Monday, YouTube will launch YouTube Red ad free for $10 a month, and if you already have Google Music, you get it for free.
Rick wants to know if he could use a Bluetooth receiver to stream music from his computer upstairs to his internet radio downstairs. Leo says probably not. Bluetooth is only 30' and it probably won't go through the floor. There would also be lag issues. That's why Leo uses Sonos to do this, and it works great because it uses DNLA.
Chris wants to get his mom an internet radio, but his mom is resistant. Leo says that radio is alive and well, but the cool thing about internet radio is that she could listen to a station from anywhere in the world. Most stations have live streaming online, but she'll need internet access to do it.
Steve has network attached storage and wants to be able to access his media anywhere in the house. Should he use wireless speakers? Leo says that conventional wireless speakers won't work all around the house, but the Sonos wireless system is an ideal solution.
Steve wants to know why it's so difficult to tune into an Internet radio station. There has to be a better way than just search and then hunt around. Why isn't there a search protocol that's common? Leo says that it only works like that if there's a central authority. But the Internet isn't like that. Googling a radio station isn't always the best because every station does it differently.