Apple to Compete with Pandora
“If Apple’s plans for a Pandora competitor go as intended, it could give the company almost complete dominance in the world of online music.”
Coming off the heels of being announced the most profitable public company of all time, Apple made it clear this week that it has no intention of slowing down or of becoming stagnant in its success. According to The Wall Street Journal and other news outlets, Apple has reportedly begun negotiations with a number of record companies, obstinately foreshadowing both an entrance into the internet radio business and the introduction of Apple as a Pandora competitor. The internet radio market, which is currently dominated by free to use, but advertisement run services like Spotify and the aforementioned Pandora Radio, would be almost completely upended by such a move by the technological titan. Though Apple’s Pandora competitor has not even been officially announced yet, Pandora Radio has already seen a massive fall in stock. After the initial rumors of Apple’s internet radio service surfaced last Friday, Pandora Radio’s stock dropped 17%, closing on the stock market that day at just $10.41. If Apple’s plans for a Pandora competitor go as intended, it could give the company almost complete dominance in the world of online music.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the service would be almost identical to Pandora Radio. Like Pandora radio, Apple’s rumored service will allow users to create “stations” made up of music similar to the song or artist being listened to. Pandora Radio was founded in 2000 by the Music Genome Project, and works by considering over 400 different types of musical attributes before selecting the next song that the virtual “station” will play. The attributes are combined to make up larger groups of focus traits, which include musical traits such as key tonality and rhythmic syncopation. This type of service is very similar in nature to Apple’s already existing Genius feature, which also allows users to create one-song-based playlists that are made up of exclusively of music from the user’s iTunes library, as opposed to the far wider selection of Pandora and similar sites.
Unique about Apple’s foray into the business is the way the company is attempting to negotiate with record companies. While Pandora Radio, Spotify and other services like it pay record labels an amount specified by the federal government, Apple has gone directly to the source, cutting out the middle man in an attempt to haggle for lower prices. By doing this, Apple intends to get itself the best possible deals and force Pandora, Spotify and other competitors to find a way to keep up. Expect to hear more on Apple’s Pandora competitor as the story develops.