Pandora/Zing Device: What it is. What it isn’t.

UPDATE: July 10, 2008. We see from the comments that many of you want Pandora on the iPhone. It’s available now — enjoy!

Lots swirling around in the blogosphere today after our Pandora Everywhere announcements last night. The one element of last night’s event that I didn’t blog about here is the prototype connected media player we showed at the end of the night.
There’s been some confusion about just what we showed last night and I thought I’d post a couple of photos and give you the direct scoop.
Here’s roughly what I said at the event:

“Looking into the crystal ball a bit, there are two changes on the horizon that we’re really excited about and those are Muni WiFi which has the potential to bring ubiquitous WiFi coverage to urban centers and WiMax which has the potential to blanket the country in a high speed network that you can access at 60 miles per hour in the middle of nowhere. While these technologies aren’t here today, they are fast approaching — Sprint alone is making a billion dollar investment in WiMax services.
One of the most interesting startups in the bay area right now is a company called Zing. They’re building a really cool platform that enables WiFi connected media players. They’re the company behind the new WiFi-connected Sansa Connect media player.
Three weeks ago when we started preparing for tonight, I called the team at Zing and asked if they’d be willing to take the Pandora Everywhere Platform and work with us to quickly develop a technology demo of Pandora running on a WiFi connected device. Here we are three weeks later and I’ve got something very cool to show you.
This is a handmade prototype of a WiFi connect Pandora media player. I should caution at this point that this is a tech demo only — there are lots of things that need to fall into place before something like this could be brought to market, not the least of which is we need ubiquitous WiFi access.
The really cool things about this prototype is that it was just three weeks in the making. the Pandora Everywhere Platform is going to let us bring Pandora to all kinds of places that you just can’t reach with a website alone.”

Some important things to note about all of this:

  • It was just a technology demo; it really wasn’t a product announcement
  • It was built by Zing and Pandora – SanDisk wasn’t involved in any way
  • Pandora has no plans to bring a Pandora-specific device to market

I’m not being coy here. This isn’t a “wink-wink-nudge-nudge it was just a demo” kind of thing. It really was just a demo. We’re excited to find out where this may lead, but it’s still very early days. As I said last night, this all came together just 3 weeks ago. We’re certainly not desperately racing off to do direct battle with the iPod. As has been observed in other quarters, that would be a strategy to approach with great caution.
As cool as the Zing/Pandora demo is, the real news last night was Pandora for Sprint and Pandora for Sonos. Both are available now and are quite real.
device.png

Pandora

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

103 thoughts on “Pandora/Zing Device: What it is. What it isn’t.

  1. I would love to have this! I would settle for Pandora on more Verizon phones…specifically the LG phones…but I would rather have a specific media device to listen to Pandora!!!

  2. I have been thinking about this device a lot recently and it occurred to me that amazon’s kindle uses sprints data network so that users are able to download books from any place. Also there is no monthly fee since users are not constantly downloading. This feature could also be used for the pandora device. If pandora contracted with sprint then people could access pandora from anywhere and if the device did not need to access the internet constantly, maybe just every couple hours. It would work perfectly. No monthly fee and nation wide access!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s