How A Mobile Transition Completely Changed Pandora

Thu, Jul 8, 2010

Android, iPhone, Mobile

Tom Conrad, CTO of Pandora, talked with Digg about how a mobile transition effected and changed Pandora’s goals and ideals. Most of the effects were from the launch of the Pandora iPhone app and changed the way the company thought about its focus on mobile devices.

As Social Times put it, Pandora first launched on the iPhone in early 2008 and had more installs in the first 24 hours than the Pandora apps on other phones in 18 months. The important factor to note here is that the amount of other phones outnumbered the iPhone by a large margin. Pandora also witnessed a similar effect when they launched on the Blackberry Storm compared to other Blackberry models. When these events took place, Pandora changed the way it thought about the mobile phones it should focus on from quantity to quality.

Another notch that Pandora learned from was making the application free on the phones. US Carriers first required Pandora to make their app have a subscription fee, and in turn the app did not do so well on these phones. Those events told Pandora that a free, ad-supported model was best.

When it comes to Android, Pandora is also a huge success in almost overtaking Blackberry in the number of installs. This is despite the fact that Android is a relative new-comer to the market. The demographic who purchases Android phones just simply use Pandora more than those who purchase Blackberry phones.

The adoption of a standard headphone jack apparently is also a huge factor for Pandora on smartphones. Having a faster processor and a stereo jack makes it a worthwhile venture for Pandora to focus on.

So, it seems Pandora is ‘getting it’ in terms of audience and technicalities. Do you use Pandora on your phone? Let us know in the comments section below.

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Talor is a Contributing Editor at Frisky Mongoose focusing on the mobile side of the social gaming world.

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