Difference Between Pandora and Last.fm (With Table)

Do you recall talking to a person and asking him about their favorite song only to uncover that they do not enjoy listening to music at all? Wee, think about it. This is practically impossible. We may all not 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 vs Last.fm

The difference between Pandora and Last.fm is that while both are platforms that are employed for streaming a multitude of songs, the former uses a complete radio approach by making different songs available to one the way a radio does, that is in the form of stations, the latter does not let you play all the songs unless you decide on a station but gives you a sneak-peak into what is playing.

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, that is, 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.

Comparison Table Between Pandora and Last.fm

Parameters of ComparisonPandoraLast.fm
ApproachIt uses a radio-like approach by making different songs available to one in the form of stationsIt does not play the songs unless you decide on a station but gives you a sneak-peak into what’s playing
Catalog of SongsIt has a limited catalog of songs to offer the listenerIt offers a considerably higher number of song choices to the listeners but still far lesser than Spotify
RecommendationsIt recommends songs per the Music Genome Project and does not always recommend the right songs that suit your tasteRecommendations are made by “scrobbling” and the recommendations made are quite accurate and more suited to one’s taste
Permissible SkipsIt allows the user to skip a song and play the next song a maximum of ten times in an hourIt allows the user to skip a song and play the next song a maximum of six times in an hour
NatureThis is a web-based applicationThis 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, that is, in the form of stations. If we loosely apply the mythological connotation of this name, then this platform truly lives up to its name- it provides the listeners with a plethora of songs similar to the songs that 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 catalog 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 that 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

  1. While Pandora’s social network is run by Facebook, Last.fm has social network tenets that are particularly designed for it.
  2. Pandora offers an iPhone app for free. In contrast, Last.fm offers a mobile app too, but there is a subscription price that has to be paid for it. However, both these platforms are also available in a web-based version.
  3. Pandora has a business model in which the 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.
  4. While Pandora offers a limited collection of songs, Last.fm offers more in comparison. However, both are no match to the now-trending platforms.
  5. Pandora does not allow its listeners to listen to the songs in the station before they start playing the music. In contrast, Last.fm gives you a sneak-peak into what’s playing.

Conclusion

It is true that the mediums through which we listen to them now have changed, but our emotions for music remain unchanged. While Pandora’s social network is run by Facebook, Last.fm has social network tenets that are particularly designed for it. Pandora offers an iPhone app for free. There is an app called Pandora One that allows you to stream songs, but if you want an ad-free experience, then you have to pay a monthly subscription fee.

In contrast, Last.fm offers a mobile app too, but there is a subscription price that has to be paid for it. However, both these platforms are also available in a web-based version. While both are platforms that are employed for streaming a multitude of songs, the former uses a complete radio approach by making different songs available to one in the form of stations. The latter is a hybrid as it does not let you play all the songs unless you decide on a station.

References

  1. https://infoscience.epfl.ch/record/128435
  2. https://repositorio-aberto.up.pt/bitstream/10216/61584/1/000148588.pdf
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