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6 Responses to Spotify in the US – a review: Is it a Pandora & last.fm killer?

  1. Steven August 15, 2011 at 9:23 am #

    Um, yeah, the ten hours limit doesn’t really set in until 6 months of using the free service…so, yeah, don’t know how come you have the time limit already…and Spotify has Artist Radio, on every artist’s page. So…yeah, it does work as a radio. I don’t see how Pandora and Spotify can compete at all. They’re completely different services. One is a music discovery service, the other is the celestial jukebox you use to listen to music you love and maybe, just maybe, discover new music with. I don’t understand how Spotify gets so much crap and hype at the same time. Must just be a journalism thing. If something gets hyped up to crazy expectations, I guess there just has to be something majorly wrong with it too…poor Spotify. I still can’t believe their iOS app has only a 2.5 star rating average…

  2. Guise Faux August 15, 2011 at 10:40 am #

    “Pandora and last.fm are most appealing to me because they are radio-like and free.”

    That’s what I like about Pandora. It’s low maintenance. If I’m in the mood for a lot of dream pop or ambient, Pandora does really well at playing compatible music. If I’m not familiar enough with a genre to choose my own playlist, or I actually want to hear artists I’m not familiar with, Pandora is hard to beat. And I don’t need to worry about Queensryche “Silent Lucidity” sneaking in between Mazzy Star and Beach House.

    I’ve tried various internet radio offerings for years and so far Pandora suits my preferences best. Last.fm was okay for awhile, before their format change a year or so ago, but the user driven algorithms for genres seemed mediocre.

    “For me the radio music experience is marked by a combination of predictability and surprise.”

    Bingo. That’s what I like about Pandora. Those occasional surprises – hearing new-to-me artists within a genre I’ve selected.

    One improvement I’d like to see in internet radio is an option to include occasional audio clips from interviews with musicians, or segues from commentators. I enjoy the commentary from “Music All Night” classical host Peter Van de Graaff. Not everyone would care for that so it should be an opt-in feature. But for me it would complete the radio experience I enjoy.

  3. Garrick August 15, 2011 at 10:58 am #

    I think a lot of people are looking at this service at the wrong way. If you are paying for the premium membership, you are paying a mere 10$ a month, typically lower than the price of (one) cd. I think YES! This is a great option for people who buy several albums a month. The idea to be able to listen to the music while not connected to the internet is amazing. You can create playlists, use the AUX cable for your car to sync thru your stereo, or even use your phone as a workout jukebox. For 10$ a month, I mean COME ONE! How lame to bash this service! They have only been around the US for one month, and to say they have a long way to go compared to the other services is ridiculous! They have 10 million users in one month. I find that to be VERY impressive.

  4. Paul Riismandel August 15, 2011 at 8:10 pm #

    It’s true that I haven’t yet encountered the 10 hour/month limit, I didn’t realize it doesn’t kick in for 6 months.

    I’m not going out of my way to find things to criticize about Spotify. Frankly, I don’t see how it’s that much different from Rhapsody, which has been around for a decade.

    For me there is still a big difference between the fidelity of CDs and LPs versus online streaming, even the “premium” services at $10 a month. I’m not knocking the convenience of the streaming services, just noting the difference. I can only speak for myself when I say that I’d rather spend the $10 a month on a CD or record than have Spotify.

    One point that I didn’t get to in my review, but that I may discuss in another post, is compensation to the artists. It’s my understanding that they don’t see much revenue from Spotify, and that is something I do consider.

  5. Eric August 17, 2011 at 11:55 am #

    I am a pandora subscriber, and have used spotify off and on since it’s release. The adds on spotify are so frequent and annoying, they drive me away whenever I try to listen for any length of time. Pandoras weren’t nearly as annoying, as far as I remember. I like weird music, and many of my favorite artists have few if any offerings (my favorite artist has one song, even though iTunes has 4 albums available).

    So, I use it to explore something that I learn about from pandora to decide if I want to make the purchase from iTunes (or maybe even an actual CD…as crazy as that might sound;) I doubt I would pay for the service until they expand the catalog by quite a bit.

    As for the argument, price of one CD a month…that’s not really true-unless you never stop subscribing (and they never go out of business).If I purchase an CD in a more conventional sense, as long as I can back that up to my home computer or telephone, I will always have access to it. However, if Spotify goes out of business or if I decide to cut back expenses, all that investment is gone.

  6. RstJ August 17, 2011 at 3:46 pm #

    I have the 9.99 full package, and while I love the instant response in an area where I get a poor 3G signal, and the stream quality, the catalog gaps are getting to be a real problem. I’m tired of searching on a band and getting one or two albums when there should be ten.

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