If you recall last year Pandora acquired Rdio and we heard rumors that they are working on a better music streaming service. Pandora has unveiled Pandora Premium and it is designed to compete against other similar services like Spotify and Apple Music. Pandora Premium will offer users an extensive library featuring millions of songs available on-demand, ad-free streaming, and the ability to save your music offline as well.
The key feature for Pandora premium is personalization. Pandora’s smart playlists will allow users to automatically add similar songs to a playlist at the tap of a button. Premium also features personalized search, which will give different users different results based on their listening history. The browse section is tailored to your tastes, including the new release section.
From the looks of it, the Pandora app is inspired by Rdio and features a sleek and clean design, and is pretty intuitive. The color of the app will also change based on the artwork of the music you’re playing. Premium still features the thumbs and radio stations that current Pandora users will be familiar with. Premium will also include a playlist featuring every song you’ve ever thumbed up, which may be extremely long if you’ve had the service for years.
If you’re already one of the 78 million users who streams Pandora every month, that listening data you have accumulated will become a part of the recommendation engine for Premium, allowing Pandora to offer up tunes it knows you’ll enjoy. That engine will most notably work once you reach the end of an album or playlist, which usually means the music has ended. Pandora Premium includes a feature called AutoPlay (another Rdio inspired feature) that will allow users to keep the music going by creating a radio station based on the album or playlist you just finished listening to.
Alongside the already popular free version, Plus, and now Premium, Pandora has accomplished its goal of offering a streaming service at multiple price points. With nearly 80 million users already using the ad-supported version of Pandora, making people to switch to the premium would be the real challenge.
Pandora says Pandora Premium will begin rolling out to users early next year.
We are not sure how many Spotify or Apple Music subscribers will switch to Pandora though. What do you think?