Pandora for Everyone

After a 5 week preview release, Pandora is now open to the public. We’d like to thank the thousands of people that helped us during the preview; we took all of your feedback to heart and were able to rev. the service based on your feedback. In particular the launch release includes several new features you told us you wanted:

  • Complete station history – scroll back and see all the songs played on your stations
  • Rate and buy any song – even after they finish playing
  • Quick access to song feedback (“I like this”, “I don’t like this”) from the song popup menu
  • Simplified “Guide Us” panel
  • An improved audio library
  • Enhanced station sharing features
  • A simple URL interface for creating stations from your blogs and websites (more on this later!)

There’s much more still to come — you’ve given us enough ideas to fill 10 releases!
The most gratifying thing about the past month for all of us at Pandora has been the opportunity to interact with all of you. We want to have the same kind of relationship with all of our listeners. Please don’t hesitate to send us an email (pandora-support@pandora.com) with your thoughts, feedback, ideas, and comments. We’re still listening!

Pandora

The Pandora Team http://www.pandora.com/

73 thoughts on “Pandora for Everyone

  1. wow…i know this is unneccessary and such, but this is wonderful. 5 minutes i put death cab for cutie in and now… good stuff.
    i also just found today something at http://www.liveplasma.com. this is important, now i need to go and write something about it. thanks for kicking arse and peace,

  2. Pandora Goes Live

    I continue to turn all of my friends and co-workers on to the service and it bodes well when initial users are frantically evangelizing in order to earn future “I used it first” credits. However, after a weekend of pretty solid use I’ve got a few com…

  3. Wow, I am very impressed with this service. I have voraciously consumed music services since the day Rhapsody was first launched and this seems to be one of the most exciting new additions. I definitely recognize the similarities between the music I like and suggest and the music recommended to me. Almost everything recommended to me is unfamiliar, which almost never happens with other site’s music recommendation functionality. When I reach the end of my free period (which will probably happen tomorrow), I’ll definitely be adding Pandora to my list of pay music services.
    The direction I would love to see this service go is to allow more detailed feedback from users. It would be great if I could rate the aspects of the songs. So I could say I like or dislike a song because of its “sycopation” or its “subtle use of strings”.
    I also enjoy reading about the musical elements identified in the songs.
    I really hope the tide turns toward subscription services and the exploration mentality finally takes hold.

  4. One more suggestion: it would cool for users who are interested in all the musical properties of the songs to be able to compare their interpretations to those of your site’s experts. You could expose whatever interface your experts use to users and then compare the user’s results to your own. Maybe even make a Java-based game out of it if you have a programmer in office who loves to do off-the-roadmap features in their spare time.
    And eventually it would be cool if your community becomes large enough if you could implement a trust system that would allow some users to contribute their own analyses to your system so it doesn’t have to rely entirely on your in-house editors.
    Anyway, cheers for a great site.

  5. Great new service! A great help in broadening my music horizons. A very probable subsxcription from me, and this will be the first music service I have subscribed to.
    One suggestion: when you add artists/songs to a station, I haven’t found a way to see what has been added after the event/what makes up the station, other than in the name which isn’t sufficient.

  6. Excellent work!
    Gray B. (above) nails the concept with “exploration mentality” . . . exploration and discovery carry that extra element of joyous surprise you get nowhere else! How nice to be able to simply turn it on and listen to the magic happen!
    I like having the selection a bit loose . . . it juices up the discovery quotient. If the tags get too explicit, I could see the discovery range narrowing too much. But that’s me, and others will surely like to constrain the tagging more. Perhaps a switchable variable between “loose” and “tight”, or even a slider.
    Will be telling lot’s of people about this (and signing up for a year).

  7. Discover Music – Pandora

    Pandora is an internet radio station that attempts to play music you will like, based on your preferences. I’m listening at the moment and have been impressed to find, having told them that I like both New Order and the Stone Roses, that it play…

  8. Love it, subscribed to it, am now on a mission to coerce the masses to drink the Pandora kool aid.
    I’d love to be able to open the smaller player. Mine tells me in both IE and Firefox that it can’t log me into the small player and that it’s the player’s fault. Don’t know about that one. I messed with the pop up and cookie settings to no avail.
    I’d also like to be able to go into my stations and see the list of people I’ve added. It seems there is a band called “The Charlatans” that are quite different from the ones I had in mind when I put the band into a station. I couldn’t figure out how to delete the band from that station without having to thumbs-down every similar (and not pleasing to me) song/genre that came on. So I deleted the station and started over.

  9. Hi.
    Love everything behind this, willing to subscribe, etc — but, for some reason, and this may be browser related, everytime I have the pandora application over — either in another tab or separate window, the browser crashes after abt 15 mins.
    I am OSX 10.3/G5, newest version of Firefox…
    Any ideas what could be done to fix this? Flash has always been slow as shit on my Mac, for some reason…
    Also, just as a feature request, I don’t want to have to ‘buy’ the song/album to read more about it quickly. Possibly some sort of integration with a non-commercial informationial portal, i.e. allmusic.com to read more about the artist? Or maybe scrape the info from allmusic and create an info text pop-up?

  10. Hmm.. It seems my stations are very short. Like only ten songs or so each… Is this normal? Maybe it’s due to lack of bandwidth or something (it hasn’t made any more queries)? Maybe you should have a status bar saying “querying for more songs” or something or “no more songs matches your query” to signify what’s going on.

  11. Like wow! I decided to give it a test run, and I’m impressed. I’m on the 4th song, and so far they’ve all been great. I’ve only heard of one so far, so the discovery quotient is fantastic.

  12. I’d just like to say that I’ve been waiting for something like this for years. While the interface isn’t perfect (and by not perfect I mean it’s not 100% but better then about 95% of the software out there), the music choices have been right on about 9 out of ten times and even the mises are close. What a great job everyone!

  13. This really is an amazing website you’ve built here. I’ve only been listening for about an hour and I’ve already heard so many great bands which I’ve never heard of before.
    Only one criticism: you may cause me to spend a painful amount of money buying cd’s!
    Thank you for your brilliant work.

  14. Wow, I’m seriously impressed. Personal, totally customized radio that accepts single-user feedback — you guys have created basically the holy grail for music listening.
    More, your backend algorithm of characterizing individual songs and then constructing feeds based off of that instead of popularity or ratings is phenomenal: it’s like the “Google of music”. Other people have tried to do music stations just like other companies have done search, but the algorithm is make-or-break, and you get it right.
    This is some amazing work. I think this service may well be the harbinger of a whole new way of listening to music, and the commercial and social implications are stunning. ClearChannel executives should have wet their pants in terror about now! :-)

  15. Wow (yeah, I know, redundant). A friend posted your site to a small email list at 4 PM. By 6 you had three new one year subscriptions including mine. Garbage in a channel created from Lords of Acid and Chemical Brothers?!? That makes no sense… but it fits perfectly! Simply brilliant.
    Two requests: Could you email me when you IPO? it’s going to be a monster. And could you email me when ClearChannel buys you? (so I can cancel my account)
    What can I say, I am stunned. Bravo!
    (oh, and be prepared – when this hits Slashdot, you’re going to get crushed)

  16. This is very impressive. Within the space of about twnty seconds, I’ve found two bands I’d never heard of which are just what I like. A very impressive project, with a good range of music.
    Nice work!

  17. Hey guys and gals,
    Pandora has got to be the best thing to hit music since the iPod! I am loving it and have already subscribed for the year. I have been telling all my friends & family and figure that at least 5 or so more people will be subscribing in the upcoming weeks. I also wrote about Pandora on my blog, The Wannabe Venture Capitalist, so I hope you are able to garner more customers that way as well. Great job with the program and I look forward to the next evolution.

  18. Wow. This is extremely cool. Very impressed with selection and the ability to change styles based on feedback of prior songs. Music My Way, pretty sweet!

  19. Great idea and service. Am in my trial and will probably sign up. How about a spiff for referrals that sign up, like extending my sub for a month for each referral I land!

  20. I’m very impressed with the sonic quality and the selection of songs. The whole idea and concept is brilliant – I hope it brings you many subscribers.
    Some thoughts thus far:
    I’d like to see a better rating system than just “thumbs up” or “thumbs down” – a 1-10 system where songs get played more or less frequently depending on the number. I also like gray b.’s suggestion of being able to rate different musical qualities. I’d also like to be able to make my own comments on a song, and re-visit them at a later date.
    Today I’ve already heard four songs I heard yesterday – which is fine (one wasn’t rated and the other was rated positively) but I’m surprised to hear repeats so soon.
    Is there a way to see a complete list of everything that has played on your stations thus far? Seems to me you can only see all that has been played in a single session.
    I started to create a new station, then rated a song “Thumbs down” in the middle, and now I’m not sure if that station is still being created or not.
    Over the past two days, the site has been a little slow. Yesterday the mini player was only working sporadically, and even then, I wasn’t always able to get data on why the song was being played. Today was better for a while, although I have experienced some internet congestion – a recent song stopped at least 10 times, making it barely listenable. Hard to tell whose end it’s coming from, though. The system is frozen on “searching the Music Genome Project.” I can’t tell if it’s just because the site is being hammered at the moment…? In any case, I will probably wait for these kinks to be ironed out before subscribing.
    I’m sure these are all things that will be fixed soon. I’m looking forward to hearing more!

  21. Pandora, Week 4 (or is it 5?).
    STILL loving every minute!
    I’ve created a couple of stations using just one or two artists and have been surprised how much I hear without going too far out of genre. Pandora’s variety is such that I’m already noticing when the songs seem to repeat, so I’ll add a couple more artists and tailor to my heart’s content.
    Pandora continues to push my limits, much to my surprise and pleasure. When I’m listening to the radio in the car, I’ll switch stations out of hand if I hear an artist I’ve never much liked. When I’m listening to Pandora I pause and give the song a chance, because I know that Pandora had a reason, based on MY preferences, to play the song. So I’ve discovered a LOT of work I like by artists I thought I didn’t like.
    I was showing a friend of mine and explaining that and his reply was simply “Well, isn’t that what you got Pandora for in the first place? to be pleasantly surprised???”
    Well, I sure am getting what I wanted!

  22. WOW Fantastic simply amzing. This is gonna be a hit just hope you’re prepared for success. I’ve been trying it for 20 min. and I’m ready to sign up thank you for making this fantasic project. can I by shares *LOL* I’m sure it would be a great investment.
    Kennith Nielsen
    Denmark

  23. I am really enjoying the service. And every recommendation that I have made has been greeted with enthusiasm. It is wonderful to have fun and interesting people collecting and distributing music. One thing I might recommend is more information on the artists, some of which I am unfamiliar with. I guess I can click through and do my own research. Since there is so much information out there on the web about artists an alliance may be necessary. Discovery is essential and what makes your service fun, then I would like to understand more about the artist, perhaps buy some cuts, and further explore the thread that I’ve uncovered.

  24. I love love love this. Yes, I do. One suggestion: when I “thumbs-down” a song, skip the “sorry” comment. I know it wasn’t personal, and that just seems sort of silly. No need to apologize.

  25. What is the relative contribution of thumbs-upping a song versus adding that song “to the station”?

  26. Listening to New Music on Pandora

    I’ve been hearing some buzz about Pandora.com recently, so when they went live to the public last week, I signed up right away. Pandora is music-recommendation engine. It’s based on the Music Genome Project, which had the goal of assembling…

  27. really excelente work.
    Im really surprised of the quality of the sound (even when im in Argentina with a not so great connection) and the “connections” you make :)
    excelent :)

  28. How about a firefox plugin so I don’t have to switch back to that tab to adjust settings or pause play.

  29. Nice service! The subscription price seems like a bargain for what you get.
    How about a standalone client, though? That Flash app is lame, and requires several clicks to launch.

  30. I would like to be able to listen to a really broad selection. What about a way to create an “everything” channel which starts with a completely random unweighted playlist, that you then trim with the thumbs up/thumbs down?

  31. Great work. I’d like to lobby for a little more filtering on lyrics. Quite a few of the tracks I’m hearing are correctly placed from a musical standpoint, but the lyrics are embarrassingly bad etc. When I put a thumbs-down on those tracks, I’m afraid that I’m throwing the musical baby out with the lyrical bathwater. Perhaps an optional sub-menu to the thumbs-down that allows users to differentiate lyrics-based thumbs-downs (or -ups) from music-based.

  32. Superb! My first go today and I have heard some great songs – both new stuff and also old stuff that I haven’t heard for ages. Count me in.

  33. Discover new music you’ll love

    I might be a little late on this. But, i came across Pandora the other day and was really amazed at how well it works. Basically what you do is enter in a Artist or song that you like…

  34. This is the best service I have seen in a long time. I was just having a conversation the other with my buddy, as I looked over his iPod and saw that all of the songs were basically things we had listened to in the 90’s and 80’s. Well, said he, “how do you find new music?”.
    Now I have an answer.
    Great job…I just hope your library grows somewhat.

  35. Wow, this is quite neat; as others have said, something we’ve been waiting for for years.
    My requests:
    1) Access to all the songs/artists you’ve approved/disapproved in your station, allowing you to edit that list. (At the very least you need an “undo” function; I typed in a word expecting to get a list of various songs with that word in it, but instead it was just added, leaving me not knowing which song was added!) And is there a way to edit a station name?
    2) An equalizer or some other way to tweak the treble in particular. I don’t know whether it’s because of the flash player, but the sound quality you get at 128kbps is, while decent, not as good to my ear as Real or even streaming mp3, especially when it’s loud or high-treble. An ability to tamp down those really high-frequency compression artifacts would be nice.
    3) Is there a list of all the albums you have on hand? I listen to pretty obscure artists, and I’d like to know before subscribing whether you have just one album by X, or ten of them, or all twenty. Even if your copyright clauses prevent you from telling me which albums you have, a number of albums for each artist would be very useful.
    4) A stand-alone player would also be nice, but since I use a Mac, I don’t want to push that too hard!
    5) A question; do subsequently added artists or songs have less of an effect on a station than the first choice? It certainly seems that way, which is too bad if you’re trying to create a more diverse station.
    6) Related to 5 (phew, I’ve gone on too long!), it would be nice to have a slider to change the diversity of a station. That is, as it is, a station seems to hew pretty close to the original choice; it would be nice to be able to make them stray a little farther. I don’t know whether you use discrete settings (rhythm type = a,b,c,or d) or continuous spectra (syncopation amount = .25), but you could get more variety either way, by allowing more non-matches with discrete settings, or a wider ball in the continuous-spectrum space around the paradigm song(s).
    Great product! May replace Music Magic Mixer and my own collection for me.

  36. Love it – planning on subscribing once my trial period is up. Works on my work Windows 2K boxen, works on my home Suse Linux boxen. Spreading the word where I can – would love to see this kind of service take off and squash the beast that is Clear Channel – the music industry in general could certainly use the shake up!
    Suggestion: I only have a single station at the moment with a somewhat eclectic mix of artists. The player seems play blocks of songs in a given genre – like a few jazz then a few indie rock – would be nice to have a scramble option that randomly plays from the my whole list.
    Thanks!

  37. Wow. Pandora is fantastic.
    Great tech, great interface. The best net radio system I’ve ever seen. Well done.

  38. Yesterday I used Pandora as a Party Jukebox. People really seemd to like it. I just have two things on my wishlist: 1. cross-plattform standalone application 2. UPnP Server functionality for streaming all this nice stuff to my livingroom :D
    and I would like to have some german folk-rock like “in extremo”, “subway to sally” and “schandmaul” …

  39. simple feature perhaps: let me bookmark songs so i can later go back and buy em (as impulsive as i am, i can’t buy a song the INSTANT that i hear it for the first time). i know you can’t play a song on demand so the utility of a list of bookmarked songs may seem less than useful but i’ve resorted to just copying names into a textpad for now.

  40. One more request – I would really like an option to hide the album art. The images are sometimes not suitable for work…

  41. Just wanted to say… I am absolutely blown away. Tried a few ‘stations’ and loved 75% of the playlist and enjoyed 100% of it. Discovery, you’re not kidding!

  42. Mike Viola on my Death Cab For Cutie station? Not necessarily obvious, but definitely PERFECT. I might have to subscribe!