Items tagged with Pandora

In the realm of music, cassette tapes are largely dead and compact discs (CDs) are not far behind. Streaming music is both the present and future, and there are big bucks at stake. Hence why satellite music giant SiriusXM today announced that it is acquiring Pandora for around $3.5 billion. Once closed, the all-stock transaction will create the world's largest audio entertainment company, SiriusXM says. "We have long respected Pandora and their team for their popular consumer offering that has attracted a massive audience, and have been impressed by Pandora's strategic progress and stronger execution. We believe there are significant opportunities to create value for both companies' stockholders... Read more...
Pandora is taking a page from Spotify's book and has unveiled a new plan that will let multiple family members have their own sub-accounts. The Pandora Premium Family Plan costs $14.99 per month, which is the same price Spotify asks for its family account. The new membership gives full access to Pandora Premium features for up to six people in the family. That is where Pandora is trying to set itself apart from the Spotify family plan with its five member slots. Each family member can listen to what they want, when they want. Each can create radio stations and custom playlists, download music for offline listening, and skip or replay songs. All music on the Premium Family Plan is accessible without... Read more...
Last year, there were reports floating around that steaming music service Pandora was open to takeover bid from SiriusXM. Well, the new year arrived and nothing ever came of those reports. However, SiriusXM is once again circling Pandora, but it’s not going for a full-blown acquisition. Instead, SiriusXM is entering into a strategic partnership with Pandora and will invest $480 million into the company. "The investment from SiriusXM infuses resources to help Pandora continue to grow and innovate," said Pandora CEO and founder Tim Westergren. "With the strategic review behind us, and a strong balance sheet, we look forward to focusing on business execution and the optimization of our strategy."... Read more...
Are you ready to open up the Pandora’s box of music streaming? Pandora Premium, a new and improved version of Pandora’s on-demand music streaming service, arrives this week. The company employed its Music Genome Project and the feedback it has received from 81 million users to develop this latest service. According to Pandora, “When we set out to build a premium music experience-- one that would set the new standard for what a music service could be-- we knew it had to be truly personal, be thoughtfully designed and take the work out of managing your world of music.” Like Pandora, Pandora Premium will have a “My Music” selection which contains every station a user has created and a list of the... Read more...
Pandora just launched Pandora Plus, its new $4.99 USD subscription service. According to Pandora, “This unique marriage of design and functionality, at a very affordable price, marks yet another milestone in Pandora’s journey to create the most personal music experience in the world, giving listeners greater flexibility and control, while allowing for the endless discovery that listeners love so much.”Tim Westergren, founder and CEO at Pandora, remarked, “Whether a listener wants to take advantage of our enhanced ad-supported experience, our groundbreaking subscription radio service, or our fully interactive on-demand option coming later this year, we have a solution tailored for you at a price... Read more...
Somewhere along the line it was decided that $10 per month would be the standard rate for an unlimited streaming music subscription. Spotify and Apple Music both charge that amount for their base service, as do several others such as Rhapsody and Google Music. But is that too much for the general public at large? Amazon and Pandora seem to think so, as both are preparing to launch streaming services for as low as $5 per month.Pandora is a bit different than the other music services named. It's essentially an Internet radio model that learns what types of music you like and tries its best to play tracks it thinks you'll be into. Starting perhaps as early as this week, it will offer an expanded... Read more...
Streaming music services are getting creative with their advertising spots, making sitting through commercials a little more tolerable for listeners. One of those ads is the Sponsored Listening hour, in which listeners interact with an ad in exchange for an hour of uninterrupted listening. This week, Pandora is taking the service out of Beta and giving advertisers some extra features for engaging customers.  While the idea of bigger, better advertising might not be thrilling, it doesn’t hurt to have a better experience for the 15 seconds or so you’ll spend to get that free hour. One of the new features Pandora is touting is 360-degree product viewing. “The sponsored listening offering is... Read more...
Pandora remains one of the most popular Internet radio stations out there and it's about to do something that could attract even more music listeners. During Pandora's investor day last Thursday, company executives said Pandora is likely to add a paid day pass to its service that would allow listeners to rock out with their cocktails out to ad-free music this summer. The thought process is that someone hosting a summer barbeque or pool party may want Pandora to DJ the event, but rather than pay $4.99 for a month-long Pandora One subscription, they'd be able to snag a 24-hour day pass for $0.99. That price isn't set in stone, though, and neither is the length of the pass -- Pandora is currently... Read more...
The sands of the ever-fickle music industry are shifting again, and this time it’s Apple that has to scramble to adjust. Once the king of digital downloads, Apple is facing a reported double-digit drop in music sales, largely because of competition from streaming services such as Pandora and Spotify. In response, Apple is considering launching a Spotify-like service of its, according to three sources who spoke to Billboard. Apple already has its iTunes Radio which is more similar to Pandora than Spotify, but Apple may have outsmarted itself by building in too many features to the service to make it quite as carefree to enjoy as some other options. Further, there have apparently been some... Read more...
If you've been thinking about subscribing to Pandora One, you'll want to make a decision sooner than later to avoid paying a higher price. Beginning in May, the cost of an ad-free Pandora One subscription is going up to $4.99 per month. That's a dollar more than what it costs now and it's intended to help offset rising costs, such as growing royalty rates. "We’ve been fortunate to be able to offer Pandora One at an affordable price since its debut in 2009 at $36 per year and later with the introduction of a monthly subscription for only $3.99 per month. Over this same period, the costs of delivering this service have grown considerably," Pandora explained in a blog post. "For example, the... Read more...
Pandora has just won the current round in the ongoing struggle over royalty fees with ASCAP (one of the agencies that collects and distributes royalty payments for musicians), and ASCAP is deeply unhappy with the ruling. Judge Denise Cote presided over the case and ruled that Pandora did not have to pay ASCAP any more than the 1.85% royalty rate for songs it plays for the period ranging from 2011-2015. According to the Wall Street Journal, ASCAP was seeking a sizable increase in royalty rates, up to 2.5% for 2013 and 3% for 2014. It was a loss for ASCAP, to be sure, but Pandora was actually seeking to reduce its royalty rates down to 1.7%, which is what terrestrial radio station pay. “We... Read more...
Chromecast is great. It lets you stream just about anything to your TV from the Internet, and it does so in a unique, simple, and brilliant way: instead of streaming directly from your smartphone or tablet, your device tells Chromecast to do the streaming. A group led by a pair of ex-Google employees has essentially done the same thing for audio that Chromecast does for video with its simple device called “Beep”. Beep (or is it “a Beep”?) is a metal dial that connects directly to virtually any speakers in your home via 3.5mm AUX, RCA, or optical input and connects wirelessly to your WiFi network. You can use the Beep app on your smartphone to tell it to play music, and... Read more...
It may seem that the world needs another streaming radio service like it needs a hole in the head, but Nokia is driving ahead with a new one called Nokia MixRadio to mix it up (as it were) with the likes of Spotify and Pandora. MixRadio will replace the former Nokia Music service, and it does have some features that competitors don’t, including the fact that you don’t have sign up for anything and the absence of ads. MixRadio uses your own listening habits--thumbs up, thumbs down--to create a personal listening experience, and the initial offerings will be “weighted” with your favorite artists. The service also scans your locally-stored music and purchased tracks. With... Read more...
Little by little, Google's tiny Chromecast device is becoming a more compelling option with each passing day. For the money, we were actually fond of the streaming dongle from the very beginning, and it's only gotten better since then. A Chromecast iOS app became official not long after launch, and more recently, Hulu Plus joined the party. What comes next? Effective immediately, you can stream Pandora through your television using Chromecast, thereby taking advantage of what might be the best speakers in your home (especially if you're running a full fledged home theater setup). "Download the latest version of the Pandora app on your Android smartphone or tablet or iPhone, and look for the same... Read more...
Friday was the day that Apple made a software update (version 6.0) available to its Apple TV customers, but over the weekend users reported that installing the update was causing a host of problems, from networking issues to actually bricking Apple TVs. In response, it appears that Apple has pulled the update, but the company has otherwise not made an official statement on the situation. Apple forums are awash in complaints of failed updates, disappearing movie rentals after the update, bricked Apple TVs, and connectivity issues. There are some tips for workarounds, but they don’t appear to work for everyone. Worse, at least one user alleges that Apple has been deleting whole threads on... Read more...
While console gamers called in sick to work today so they could stay home and steal cars in Grand Theft Auto V, Pandora chose to put its nose to the grindstone and revamp its mobile app for the iPad, and perhaps perform a little thievery of its own, such as stealing some thunder away from Apple's iTunes Radio debut in iOS 7. Some have dubbed iTunes Radio a Pandora killer, but Pandora has no intention of going down without a fight (or at all). Pandora 5.0 for iPad introduces a host of new features while at the same time enhancing and optimizing the streaming music and discovery experience for the larger iPad screen size, the company says. "We’re on a constant mission to provide our listeners... Read more...
Love 'em or hate 'em, Apple has the ability to move markets, influence rivals, and change the status quo. Just take a look at Pandora. The streaming radio giant made a move earlier in the year that put a 40-hour cap on mobile listening. Naturally, it was imlpemented in order to encourage more folks to pay for premium services, and likely as a way to get a better handle on revenue. But now, on today's earnings call, Pandora's CFO reversed course. Here's what Mike Herring had to say: "When we introduced the 40 hour mobile listening limit, we were confident that our scale – over 7% of total radio listening and Pandora’s number one ranking in most major markets – would allow us... Read more...
The streaming music sector may be on its way to becoming saturated with too many options. Time will tell whether all the different services can co-exist, but in the meantime, one of the industry's pioneers, Pandora, is ensuring that if it falls by the wayside, it won't be due to neglect in terms of app updates. Version 4.4 of Pandora has been released to iTunes, and among other things, if purportedly offers better buffering to keep your music stutter-free when you're stuck on an unreliable connection. In addition, if you mute your iPhone, Pandora will automatically pause the track you're listening to, or at least it's supposed to. We weren't able to engage the feature when testing Pandora on... Read more...
Details are emerging about Apple’s licensing deals with record labels for its iTunes Radio service, which was recently announced at the company’s WWDC event. According to Billboard, Apple will pay indie labels 0.13 cents in royalties per song plus 15% of net advertising revenue in the service’s first year of operation; that’s a bit different than the deal it struck with the majors, which appears to be 0.1325 cents per song. In the second year, indie labels will get 0.14 cents and 19% of ad revenues. The Wall Street Journal notes that Pandora pays out 0.12 cents and about half the advertising percentage Apple pays, so it would seem that Apple is giving labels a better deal.... Read more...
Millions of music lovers have discovered Pandora, the streaming music service that serves up tunes it thinks you'll dig based on your listening preferences. Having found a home on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, Pandora now wants to take residence on your big screen television, hence the launch of tv.pandora.com, which is essentially a new user interface designed specifically for flat screen TVs. "This is an entirely new experience designed from the ground up for your television and remote control," Pandora stated in a blog post. "This new initiative is standards-based and embraces next generation TV, game console, and set top box architectures that support open web standards." Pandora... Read more...
Pandora is feeling the squeeze. Its competitors are growing in both number and stature, and the field of streaming music and streaming “radio stations” is getting very, very crowded. The company is also facing difficulties paying royalty costs, which led Pandora to cap mobile listening to 40 hours per month. However, Pandora is not sitting idly by; the company has elbowed its way onto the TV screen with a new smart TV app called tv.pandora.com. It is what you’d expect it to be: a neatly redesigned Pandora UI that runs the service on your TV screen instead of merely your PC or mobile device. Pandora built the app with open web standards, which it (probably rightly so) believes... Read more...
Once again, word on the web is that Apple is getting ready to launch a streaming music service, which it could announce at its upcoming Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC). According to various reports, Apple recently inked a deal with Warner Music Group that would give the company a 10 percent stake, following a similar deal with Universal Music Group several weeks ago. Sony, for the time being, has yet to jump on board. We've heard rumors of Apple launching a streaming music service before, but never ones this specific or this far along in negotiations. Pandora's shareholders certainly believe there's truth to the rumor and have been dumping stock in anticipation of what could be a game changing... Read more...
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