Pandora Radio is an amazing online radio station, which decomposes music into it’s essential components in order to learn exactly what you like to listen to. It gets better at predicting what your taste in music is the longer you use it by you telling it when you like / dislike a specific song. At this stage, whenever I want to listen so a specific “kind” of music while working, it is easier to just turn on Pandora as it would be impossible for me to sort my MP3 album as accurately as they predict what music I would like.
Unfortunately Pandora is currently available in the USA only, mostly due lo licensing agreements. While that may be a valid reason for Pandora to not offer me the service, it is not a valid reason for me not to use the service. So, this post will describe how to use Pandora on your iPhone, anywhere in the world. This is done by quite simply configuring a VPN Tunnell, through which your iPhone gets an US based IP Address. This is all Pandora needs to start streaming you music!
So let’s get started:
Firstly, you need to download an install the Pandora iPhone App. You can do this in any of three ways:
- From your computer which is running iTunes, go to: http://www.pandora.com/on-the-iphone
- From your iPhone directly, go to: http://pandora.nenit.com
- From your iPhone, just search for “Pandora” in the App Store.
Now that you have installed the Pandora App, launch it and you should see the following error message:
O.K, In order to fix this, you will need to sign up for a VPN service. While free services do exist, I have yet to find one that works reliably and offers good performance. I have played around with a number of commercial options as well, and found the best price/performance compromise offering to be StrongVPN available here.
Once you get to their page, click on “Order”. All you need is their cheapest PPTP VPN option. If you however want know that you will be using the service for a long time, you could also go for one of their 12-Month specials as highlighted below:
Choose an option by clicking “Order Now”. On the next page, you should again pick the option most relevant to you, I usually go for the 3-month PPTP option as shown below:
Once you have completed the order process, you will be send a couple of emails (below), as well as receive a confirmation phone-call just to confirm that you in fact gave the correct details.
One of the e-mails will also contain the “Account Setup Instructions”, which will everything you need in order to configure your iPhone:
Now you are ready to configure your iPhone. Firstly, go to “Settings”.
If you do not have any VPNs configures, the phone will ask you for VPN detais. If you already have a VPN, choose to “Add VPN Configuration…”. In the VPN Configuration complete the VPN details from your Setup Instructions eMail as shown below:
Once you are done, click “Save” and it will take you back to the previous screen. Now you are ready to fire up your VPN Connection. If you have more than one VPN Configuration, make sure that the StrongVPN option is selected and slide the VPN slider to “ON”. The VPN will take a couple of seconds to connect, and will then show “Status Connected: ” as you can see below:
Now you are ready to fire up the Pandora App again, and start listening to your kind of music!
I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!