What happened to you Pandora? I vividly remember a point in time, not long ago, that Pandora Radio was the music app. It was such a success that I even recall people regularly using the brand name Pandora as a reference to just play some music. There aren't many products who are able to reach such a notoriety that their brand name is then turned into a commonplace reference for what the product offers (think Kleenex). It's hard for an app in today's cell phone driven society to reach success across the board of age brackets, let alone for one to do it 10 years ago! Maybe it was just a different time. I remember when Spotify started growing exponentially, I never seen the alure- but I get it now. If I wanted a library of music I just torrented it back then- but it still didn't have the charm that Pandora did, no matter how many discographies filled my iTunes library.
What happened to you Pandora? I remember having the thought around 5 years ago that it seemed like whomever developed the Pandora was a one man show or very small team that seemed to more reactive at growing the brand and adding features opposed to the other competitors in the market.
About two and a half years ago I made a hard decision and took my obsessive listening habits to Spotify for a year because of how extensive the Wrapped feature was. The first year truthfully wasn't too bad because I was able to transfer over all my stations into playlists and thumbs into a library that was extensive and versatile. I was able to push to about the middle of the 2nd year (this most recent), until my library really started to dry up on me and it was then that I realized just how unique Pandora truly is. While I genuinely loved being able to claim a top 1% of listening time on Spotify the last two years- I've been ready to come back home to Pandora.
After using Spotify for that time, I was spoiled on certain convenience factors. It's almost like a toxic relationship it feels like; Pandora knows how good their product is and refuse to work on any other part of themselves because they know people will still crave them. I was riding the wave with Pandora way back when, when Spotify started really overtaking them, I was there, hyping up their over-due feature updates that were far too late to stay with the trend of time, now I get embrace for the laughs that are bound to come my way when I speak good on Pandora because even if they have the best radio and algorithms their product has become an inconvenience in itself to use outside of a web player. They went from a S tier staple app set to ride the wave for many years to a stagnant uninspiring afterthought that many place right alongside FM radio... All at their own fault and complacency.
Removing the end of year review really highlights that there is no desire for this app to try and regain any relevancy or take back some of what was once all yours, but instead just be another subscription-based service on an asset sheet for shareholders. I don't like wishing ill-will, but I will no longer be supporting you in any manner. Get it together.
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