“Oidar is actually radio spelled backwards,” explained Unnikrishnan, when asked how he came up with the name. “There are a lot of apps with the word radio in them, so I just wanted to name my app differently to stand out from the crowd,” he added.
Oidar was created out of Unnikrishnan’s love for listening to online radio podcasts, specifically talk and news shows. However, according to him, “Most of the podcast radio apps are US-centric and finding Asia-centric shows, especially in a language other than English, is hard.”
Rajiv Unnikrishnan, Creator, Oidar
The app caters to the Asian market with a greater focus on curating podcasts from large markets such as India, Indonesia and China, in English and a variety of local and regional languages. At the moment, the app has some two million shows one can access.
Some of the most popular programmes that Oidar features include The Mr Brown show (Singapore), All India Bakchod (India) and news shows like This Week In Technology.
Oidar features a UI that is card-based with each podcast having its own card complete with information, play controls, etc. Swiping to the left and right changes the podcasts. The app is divided into sections for the various kinds of podcasts — from talk shows to comedy shows to news and even the gospel.
The free app, currently an iOS exclusive, has been on the App Store for a week and has seen downloads from all around the world. Unnikrishnan added, “We are going to have in-app purchases similar to services like Spotify. Premium features such as offline mode, less limits on the amounts of podcast switching are avenues we are looking at.”
It also touts full social integration with Facebook and Twitter.
At the moment, Oidar is a one man show, with Unnikrishnan having no employees and financing the project himself. The actual app programming and the like was outsourced to India. However, Unnikrishnan handles the back-end himself.