Do you recall talking to a person and asking him about their favourite song only to uncover that they do not enjoy listening to music at all? Wee, think about it! This is practically impossible.
We may not all share the same taste in music, but our ears certainly crave some form of it. The mediums through which music is available to us now have transmuted, but the joy remains the same.
Two players in the market that continue to rock our world are Pandora and Last.fm.
- Pandora offers personalized radio stations based on user preferences, while Last.fm tracks a user’s listening habits to suggest new music.
- Pandora is available only in the US, Australia, and New Zealand, while Last.fm is available worldwide.
- Pandora offers both free and paid subscriptions, while Last.fm is entirely free but has some limitations.
Pandora vs Last.fm
Pandora is a personalized radio service that creates custom stations based on a user’s preferences. Users can give a thumbs up or thumbs down to each song to refine their station and make it more tailored to their taste. Last.fm is a social music platform that focuses on music discovery and recommendations.
Pandora is a platform that streams songs. It uses a complete radio approach by making different songs available to one the way a radio does, in the form of stations.
If we loosely apply the mythological connotation of this name, then this platform truly lives up to its name.
Last.fm is a fusion. This is because it does not let you play all the songs unless you decide on a station but gives you a sneak-peak into what is playing.
In other words, it allows the user to listen to the songs playing in a station for a minute before they can settle on one.
|Parameters of Comparison||Pandora||Last.fm|
|Approach||It uses a radio-like approach by making different songs available to one in the form of stations.||It does not play the songs unless you decide on a station but gives you a sneak-peak into what’s playing.|
|Catalogue of Songs||It has a limited catalogue of songs to offer the listener||It offers a considerably higher number of song choices to the listeners but is still far lesser than Spotify|
|Recommendations||It recommends songs per the Music Genome Project and does not always recommend the right songs that suit your taste.||Recommendations are made by “scrobbling”, and the recommendations made are quite accurate and more suited to one’s taste.|
|Permissible Skips||It allows the user to skip a song and play the next song a maximum of ten times in an hour.||It allows the user to skip a song and play the next song a maximum of six times in an hour.|
|Nature||This is a web-based application||This is a web-based application|
What is Pandora?
It is a music experience that generations before the present were used to. Pandora is a platform that streams songs. It uses a complete radio approach by making different songs available to one the way a radio does, in the form of stations.
Suppose we loosely apply the mythological connotation of this name. In that case, this platform truly lives up to its name- it provides the listeners with many songs similar to those you enjoy listening to.
A song streaming platform gains popularity based on the number of songs that it offers its listeners and the accuracy with which it recommends him to listen to other songs that he hasn’t listened to yet but might like based on the type of songs he has played earlier.
In both these aspects, Pandora doesn’t seem to be performing too well.
The catalogue of songs that it affords its listeners is limited and ranges only between eighty thousand to a million, which is nothing compared to the number Spotify offers now.
Furthermore, it recommends songs per the Music Genome Project and does not always recommend the right songs that suit your taste.
It is a web-based application and cannot be accessed from our phones.
What is Last.fm?
It is generally regarded as a hybrid because it does not let you play all the songs unless you decide on a station but gives you a sneak-peak into what is playing.
When it comes to the number of songs offered, it performs well.
Also, recommendations are made on it by “scrobbling,” and the recommendations made are quite accurate and more suited to one’s taste.
It allows the user to skip a song and play the next song a maximum of six times in an hour. Another factor that has to be noted is that even this is a web-based platform.
The problem with web-based song streaming platforms is that no one uses their desktops to listen to music anymore, and this possibility is rendered impossible when you are on the move.
But there is an aspect in which Pandora gets the upper hand. This is when it comes to the shuffling of songs.
It allows the user to skip a song and play the next song a maximum of six times in an hour, as against its competitor, which allows the user to skip a song and play the next song a maximum of ten times in an hour.
Main Differences Between Pandora and Last.fm
- While Facebook runs Pandora’s social network, Last.fm has social network tenets that are particularly designed for it.
- Pandora offers an iPhone app for free. In contrast, Last.fm offers a mobile app, but a subscription must be paid for it. However, both these platforms are also available in a web-based version.
- Pandora has a business model in which advertisements play a crucial role in generating revenue. Last.fm is free in a few countries, and they charge a fee if you wish to listen to more than 50 songs in a month.
- While Pandora offers a limited collection of songs, Last.fm offers more in comparison. However, both are no match to the now-trending platforms.
- Pandora does not allow its listeners to listen to the songs on the station before they start playing the music. In contrast, Last.fm gives you a sneak-peak into what’s playing.
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Chara Yadav holds MBA in Finance. Her goal is to simplify finance-related topics. She has worked in finance for about 25 years. She has held multiple finance and banking classes for business schools and communities. Read more at her bio page.