Pandora says its 'like' data keeps it relevant against Spotify, Apple

The company is eyeing other investments in the Internet of Things

Chris Barton, founder of Shazam, left, and Chris Martin, middle, CTO at Pandora, spoke about the future of music at the M1 mobile summit on Nov. 13, 2014, with Harry DeMott of Raptor Ventures.

Chris Barton, founder of Shazam, left, and Chris Martin, middle, CTO at Pandora, spoke about the future of music at the M1 mobile summit on Nov. 13, 2014, with Harry DeMott of Raptor Ventures.

Pandora, the algorithmic music radio app, is not afraid of its competitors in on-demand streaming like Spotify and Apple-owned Beats Music, because it has better feedback data than them, the company claims.

"We're sitting on a gold mine of music and metadata relative to what people like and don't like. If we can continue to mine that, that's our opportunity," said Chris Martin, chief technology officer at Pandora.

"Pandora is still in its adolescence," he added, speaking during a panel discussion at the M1 mobile summit in San Francisco Thursday.

Pandora now has about 45 billion pieces of thumbs-up and thumbs-down "like" data, which helps to determine the songs the app plays for users. That's been the foundation of Pandora's app, but it's a model now threatened by other apps like Spotify, Rdio and Beats Music, which provide other ways to help people consume and find music. The competitors' services include user customized and outside curated playlists.

But building up data around the song itself is important, and Pandora remains committed to using feedback signals from users, Martin said. That's what will allow the company to continue to provide personalized playlists for users, he said.

At the same time, Pandora now has around 1 million pieces of music in its app that are manually curated, he said. Human-made playlists are a big element in Apple-owned Beats' service.

Pandora is also eyeing opportunities to get its service into a greater variety of devices as the Internet of Things grows, said Martin in an interview following the panel discussion. The upcoming Apple Watch is one possible device, and other connected devices in the home, he said. Pandora's app can be added now to other devices like the Ouya gaming console, and cars.

"It's about ubiquitous music," Martin said.

Pandora says it has about 80 million active users.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Internet-based applications and servicesPandoraMusic and audioRdiomobileShazamBeatsinternetmobile applicationsAppleSpotify

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Zach Miners

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?