Slacker is turning up the heat in audio entertainment by going into live content.  Some people feel that Internet Radio is nothing more than a "jukebox" over the Internet, but that is shortsighted thinking.  The Internet platform is not only capable of delivering all of the music listeners want, but also very capable of delivering live programming.  On January 9, 2011, ESPN and Slacker, Inc.  announced live streaming of ESPN Audio shows and sporting events to Slacker listeners.  This is a natural extension of the Slacker Radio/ESPN Audio agreement first announced last September.

Live ESPN content is now available for listening on the web at Slacker.com, with mobile experiences coming soon.  The new live streaming feature launched in a big way with the BCS Championship title game featuring  No. 1 LSU versus No. 2 Alabama.  The live feed will be available to all Slacker listeners (to expose them to the concept) via the web player.  Future live programming will be available to Slacker Radio Plus and Slacker Premium Radio subscribers. The interactive ESPN Radio station on Slacker will remain free and available to all listeners.

"Since offering customizable ESPN Audio content, the response has been overwhelmingly positive, but many listeners have requested live sports.   This new feature is yet another example of how Slacker is combining the best elements of traditional radio with our listeners' demand for personalization of music, news, sports and more."

The complete Slacker Radio experience includes over 150 expert-programmed and interactive music stations, along with customizable stations featuring ESPN Radio, ABC News, comedy, custom artist-hosted showcase stations and leading music festival stations.  In addition, Slacker listeners can create their own personalized radio stations featuring their favorite music, news and sports.  Slacker Premium Radio also includes on-demand access to the entire Slacker music library featuring millions of songs.

With a line-up like that it is little wonder why Slacker has a growing number of fans, and is one of my favorite audio entertainment providers.  No, that does not mean that I do not love my Sirius XM, but Slacker is becoming a more compelling service with each passing quarter.

The addition of ESPN Audio live shows and sporting events to the increasing line-up of stations and services reinforces that Slacker Radio has the most varied and compelling range of customizable content offered by any radio service, while maintaining the most personal listening experience.  ESPN Audio live shows and sporting events are available starting today on the web, with mobile integration coming soon. The ESPN Radio station is free for all listeners, while Slacker Radio Plus and Slacker Premium Radio subscribers have access to the full ESPN experience, including two highly customizable myESPN Radio sports stations, live shows and select sporting events. Slacker Radio Plus is available for $3.99 per month and Slacker Premium Radio for $9.99 per month at Slacker.com or billed directly to your Verizon Wireless, T-Mobile USA or AT&T account from within the Slacker application on Android and BlackBerry smartphones.