DEBATE: Is Apple’s New “Pandora Service” the Next “Ping” or Something Huge?
[UPDATE: Pandora’s stock sinks over latest Apple news]
On September 12th, the world might be introduced to more than just the iPhone 5, but iTunes’ next big move. While super companies like Google and Apple can screw up from time to time (Google Wave, Ping or Apple TV), they’re also super companies for a reason. According to Hypebot, there are rumors that Apple is ready to announce a streaming service within iTunes in order to compete with Spotify and Pandora. The immediate reaction is: okay, so this is another Ping, right?
Not so fast. Ping was an integrated iTunes service that worked like a social network to provide social profiles to musicians and allow iTunes users to share playlists. When iTunes is rumored to be making a “Pandora” service, that means a different thing; Pandora is a radio site, not a profile-sharing site. Critics wouldn’t be comparing this move as a move to close the gap on music streamers if it was just going to be another social network service like Ping.
Does that mean it won’t fail like Ping? Of course not. It’s going to be interesting how Apple tries to integrate a radio service within a download-heavy behemoth. How do you balance it? How will labels react Apple’s rates for plays? There are only questions here, but it’s interesting to see how this could change the playing field with iTunes in regards to every streaming service on the web. It’s foreseeable that iTunes could render these services irrelevant if iTunes can offer something of the same thing. It will probably be free since Apple scrapped the idea of a subscription-based service, so that’s an immediate threat to Spotify whose still gunning for paid subscriptions in the long run.
This all could be absolutely nothing, but if it’s something…look out.