Back in the summer of 2008, Pandora had over 10 million listeners on the web and we were growing at a pretty good clip. Then in July we released Pandora for iPhone and everything changed. Suddenly, people could take Pandora with them: into the gym, the car, the living room, the kitchen, outside while jogging… the list goes on. Pandora truly became an anytime, anywhere phenomenon and as a result the use of Pandora accelerated dramatically. Less than two years later, we have over 50 million listeners and mobile listening accounts for more than 40% of the hours we stream.

In the years that followed, we brought Pandora to more and more environments with the goal of being everywhere our listeners wanted us to be: on Blackberries and Androids, Blu-Rays and TVs.

However, there was still one thing missing for our iPhone users: background listening. That’s all about to change.

Some weeks ago Apple invited us to a secret meeting where they revealed that background applications were coming to the iPhone OS 4 and that they’d like to use Pandora to show off these new capabilities at their big iPhone OS 4 product unveiling. Under the new operating system, Pandora will stream in the background while you use your iPhone to browse the web, read an e-book or play a game.

Participating in Apple’s launch event meant sending an engineer to Apple to update our software for OS 4 (this took about a day) and many, many, many (many) hours of presentation preparation so that we’d be ready to share the stage with Steve Jobs. This of course was all done with the utmost secrecy. Just a tiny handful of people even inside Pandora knew what we were doing.

Getting to participate in one of these Apple events has been a kind of lifelong dream for me. The Apple folks are masters of these types of presentations and it was an incredible experience to get to experience it from the inside. As our Founder Tim and I stood on stage presenting, there was a moment about halfway through where my nerves calmed enough (The software was going to work! It was going to be ok!) that I could just enjoy the moment and just take it all in. I don’t think I’ll ever forget it.

Apple released the iPhone OS 4 Developer Preview this week so that engineers can start updating their applications in anticipation of the launch of the new OS sometime this summer. We’re incredibly excited to enable background listening on the iPhone (and ultimately on the iPad too) — we’ll be ready just as soon as Apple ships the new OS.



  1. Seventh day Adventist
    April 14, 2010 at 8:19am
    That's awesome! You guys continue to evolve what online radio is and what it is suppose to be. Keep up the great work!
  2. rob
    April 14, 2010 at 4:42pm
    This was the very first app I downloaded when I got my Droid. You guys have opened me up to a few new artists that I've never heard of before & I thank you for that
  3. Kimberly
    April 14, 2010 at 5:51pm
    Congratulations :) New Listener, I Love Pandora!
  4. qq
    April 14, 2010 at 11:51pm
    Ex 365 user. I was using live 365, but the commercials were really really killing me. The sponsored commercials are far longer than the free version of pandora, and the 365 promotions are completely out of control. I mean literally every couple songs you have to listen to them ask you to upgrade. Plus 365 is a lot more expensive than pandoara. But the main reason I got my paid subscription, is because pandoara free gave me a ton of free music, i had a few accounts, and i listed for like a month, ... and instead of getting annoyed like with 365, I found it pretty amazing. Love the death metal station! The post punk station needs work. Wish the music categories were a little more broken down like death, black, speed, classic metal. Don't know why doom is mixed with stoner. They really don't go well together. ... wish users had the option to deselect song criteria. Kinda like netflix does where you can pick "types of movies and mix and match qualities." for example demanding instrumentals or minor tones. The sound quality is also good. The pandora site needs an upgrade, its kinda lame. Its sorta buggy, slow and doesn't really do anything useful. Also, I saw pandora provides refunds to non-us users who cannot get on, pro rated. The quality and fairness of the service is what makes it successful.
  5. Greg
    April 17, 2010 at 4:52am
    Is there a way to beta test this app? I love it!
  6. Valerie Joseph
    April 17, 2010 at 6:51am
    Thank you so much for your service. This is heaven for me. Several years ago most of my CD's were stolen and it was before I got my Mac so my music wasn't loaded onto my computer. You let me listen to all my favorite music while I slowly rebuild my personal collection. Also the way you designed the software, you remind me of so much music that I forgot I loved. I will end up repurchasing not only all the music I lost but much more now because you will remind me of artists and songs I hadn't gotten around to collecting yet. Thanks again so much for what you have created. I have been telling everybody about you but all my friends seem to be aware of you already. I'm a little slow on the uptake sometimes. I'm a relatively old Rock Chick (45) and I know that I will never know as much about the current technology as my young cousins, nieces and former students. But maybe Pandora will help me catch up. Sincerely, Valerie Joseph
  7. Claire
    April 18, 2010 at 11:55am
    I love Pandora just got it for my Iphone, it is totally awesome!!
  8. Kimberly
    April 18, 2010 at 2:23pm
    Your site is AWESOME!!! Rock On!
  9. N Mozeson
    April 18, 2010 at 3:45pm
    Are you going to add to the genre list? Some others I would like to see are : CELTIC, KLEZMER, BLUEGRASS. Meanwhile, thankyou for the opportunity to discover new musicians.
  10. Liz
    April 18, 2010 at 7:34pm
    OK, i really want to say how AWESOME the whole Pandora Radio experience has been for me. How in the hell are you guys so good at figuring out what i like? seriously! they know better than I do! Just wanted to thank you for that right there, Pandora. Kudos. Love their current app for the iphone too! sorry. come on, if you've tried this service you know you want to leave a comment thanking them as well.

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