Pandora 200M+ subscribers, but what’s wrong with this story?

What’s Driving Pandora’s Total Active User Count?

Disclaimer- It is not for lack of new in the Telco pricing space that I chose to focus on this Forbes article.  In fact, this analysis does not mention pricing plans, charging, mobile operators or Telcos of any form or shape.  That is precisely why I the topic jumped out at me.2014 Sep_4_2

All-in-all a well composed story about Pandora’s growth and prospects.  The fact that there is no mention of operators anywhere in the picture should ring warning bells – at least for the operators.  Without raising the ire of the Net Neutrality folks, what does Pandora do if the operators change the playing field?  What tricks does Pandora have in its box?  Are they actively courting with operators?  Competitors such as Spotify and Deezer have been very active in this area signing deals with the like of Sprint and Vodafone to name a few.

Pandora, like other music streaming services, is essentially a middle-man.  They go through other middle-men to get access to song libraries and have occasionally partnered directly with recording labels.  Everyone seems to be taking a cut.  While I am not sure how much the recording artists see from these deals, the Operators definitely seem to be the ones without a finger in this particular pie!  With connected cars and other opportunities on the horizon – what’s an operator to do?

  • Pandora Media is one of the largest Internet radio providers in the U.S. with more than 200 million registered users, out of which about 35% are using its services actively.
  • Since the launch of its services in cars, Pandora has struck deals with the world’s leading automotive manufacturers such as BMW, Chevrolet, Ford, Mercedes-Benz, GMC, and Lincoln and with suppliers of major automobile manufacturers to integrate the Pandora service into current and future automotive sound systems. This move helped Pandora expand its service network beyond PCs and Mobile devices, thus providing a complete solution to its customers.

 More Here…  [Forbes]  

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