Best internet radio

Reviews

There are paid internet radio streaming services, but there’s also plenty of free content with ads. Your internet radio can access both, so you don’t have to pay monthly fees.

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Which internet radio is best?

Internet radios can combine multiple functions in a convenient package. Some can serve as alarm clocks, others are Bluetooth or smart speakers and some can be standalone MP3 players. Looking at the best internet radios, they do more than just radio.

Sungale 2nd-Gen Wi-Fi Internet Radio with Touchscreen has numerous features and adaptability to user preferences. 

What to know before you buy an internet radio

Understanding internet radio

You can try out internet radio and online music streaming services on your smartphone or computer before considering an internet radio. This can help you pick out your subscriptions and favorite stations ahead of time.

Existing subscriptions

Not all radios support every app or streaming service. Before buying the radio that’s right for you, decide what internet radio services or stations you’ll be using and find a model that will work. There are many possible streaming options, so determine the best way to listen to your favorite services.

Other radios

If you like classic radio, there’s good news — some internet radios have built-in FM functionality, and even if yours doesn’t, you can still access your favorite FM stations. Most broadcasts also broadcast the signal online and you can listen to those digital broadcasts with internet radios. 

What to look for in a quality internet radio

Connectivity

Wi-Fi and ethernet cables are the main methods for connecting an internet radio to online content. Good internet radios have stable connectivity and diverse options for connections. Bluetooth, 3.5-millimeter audio cables, USB cables and more can help to connect your internet radio to other devices and improve your listening experience. Not all radios have every method for connections, so make sure your internet radio is capable of connecting to all your devices.

Audio sources

There are many sources of music and audio content internet radios can access. They can access radio streams, online music streaming sources and many are able to connect via Bluetooth to other devices. A few are even equipped with disc players for CDs or USB ports for MP3 files if you have an existing music collection to use.

Controls

Internet radios usually have physical controls, and the best come with remote controls or apps for your phone that let you control the device from farther away. Some are compatible with digital assistants and others have high-quality digital screens. Look for an internet radio with adaptable control methods.

How much you can expect to spend on an internet radio 

Most midrange internet radios can be found for $100-$400, while simple and affordable options can be picked up for under $100. If you want a particularly high-end internet radio with a multitude of features, there are some specialty items available for about $400-$500.

Internet radio FAQ

Can internet radios use satellite radio subscriptions?

A. Most internet radios are not able to directly receive a satellite signal. However, if you have satellite radio equipment, like a portable receiver, you can connect it to an internet radio and still access that audio content. 

Do internet radios work with other audio setups?

A. Yes, most internet radios can be connected to stereos and other audio equipment using the necessary auxiliary cables. If you have a sound system that you already like, it may be worth considering a device that can access the content you want instead of an all-in-one internet radio device.

What’s the best internet radio to buy?

Top internet radio

Sungale 2nd-Gen Wi-Fi Internet Radio with Touchscreen

Sungale 2nd-Gen Wi-Fi Internet Radio with Touchscreen

What you need to know: This radio is perfect for not just listening to songs but also to stream audiobooks.

What you’ll love: It has a high-quality digital screen and multiple built-in apps and radio station databases. Audio can be played from your favorite audio streaming accounts like Spotify, SoundCloud or Prime Music. The battery life varies from two to six hours and the storage capacity is 16GB.

What you should consider: No remote control.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top internet radio for the money

Ocean Digital Portable Internet Radio

Ocean Digital Portable Internet Radio

What you need to know: This affordable FM and Wi-Fi-enabled radio can be taken with you on the road, camping and anywhere else.

What you’ll love: This model has a compact, easily portable design. The rechargeable battery lasts about eight hours. The radio can access FM stations and internet stations. It has Bluetooth-enabled compatibility for playing audio from your phone or other Bluetooth devices. 

What you should consider: Since it’s a smaller device, the sound quality is limited.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Sangean WFR-28 Internet Radio

Sangean WFR-28 Internet Radio

What you need to know: This is a solid, affordable option that also features USB playback capability so it can serve as an MP3 player in addition to a radio.

What you’ll love: It has plenty of preset buttons and a digital screen to display information. It’s very lightweight. It plays FM stations, internet radio and MP3 files. You can control the device remotely using the free companion app that can also connect to your Spotify.

What you should consider: Users have found that the Wi-Fi connectivity is unreliable and certain Bluetooth devices have difficulty connecting.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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Elliott Rivette writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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