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Spotify vs. Pandora

Through the years in the 21st century, listening to music has taken a drastic turn. We started with vinyl records to radio to the cassette players, CDs and followed by that came music streaming services. One of the few popular streaming services and probably the best is Spotify.

We take a look at the difference between Spotify and Pandora.

To briefly explain what both do, Spotify listeners have the freedom to choose to listen to songs that they love at anytime, anywhere. On the other hand, Pandora is a radio service that does not grant this freedom to listen to specific songs at a particular time. Instead, Pandora gives a radio station mix based on artists and songs that the user likes.

Spotify vs. Pandora – a comparison

Choice of listening

As already mentioned before, Pandora is a radio service that creates radio stations based on the artists you like and combines those artists to give you a mix that you may like. However, it does not allow you to listen to a specific that you may have in mind, which is perhaps its biggest flaw.

On the other hand, Spotify gives you the freedom to listen to any song you like at any point in time. You can also download about 10,000 songs if you have the premium version. Spotify has also introduced a “Spotify Blend” that can blend in your playlist with a friend’s playlist.

Availability and different versions

Pandora is available in very few countries worldwide, such as Australia, New Zealand, and the United States. On the other hand, Spotify is found worldwide in dozens of continents and countries. Pandora’s premium version, called Pandora One, is $4.99/month. Spotify offers you a 3-month trial of the Spotify Premium for $1. Individual membership is $9.99

Audio quality 

Pandora audio quality is lesser compared to Spotify. For its free version, Pandora offers 64kbps and 192 kbps for Pandora One users. On the other hand, Spotify offers 160 kbps for free users and 320 kbps for some Spotify Premium songs.

Understanding how Spotify and Pandora work

Is Spotify better than pandora

Spotify is not much about new music discovery but replacing old-timers like iTunes and Windows Media Player with easier listening methods. It has an extensive catalogue of about 20 million songs. You can search for an artist and stream their music with Spotify’s online music player. You can also share your activity on social media handles like Instagram to let people know what kind of music you’re currently listening to.

On the other hand, Pandora consists of radio stations that mix or playlists of artists you like. Because of this, there is a sort of limitation when it comes to Pandora. These playlists are made based on the kind of music the user listens to, and individual songs or albums are not supported on Pandora.

Pandora users can also customize their radio stations by giving a thumb up or down to the recommended songs. They can share their stations with friends. These playlists on Pandora are made in a music database called the Music Genome Project. Another limitation to Pandora is that it is available in only a few countries like the US and Australia, and Spotify, on the other hand, is available worldwide.

It depends on the user’s streaming service they want. The interface also matters, and most users prefer Spotify because of its friendly interface. As mentioned before, the free apps have ads that interrupt your music listening.

Spotify is far more superior to Pandora when it comes to audio quality. However, it should be noted that if parents of children are worried about what kind of music their child is listening to, then the better option to go for is Pandora. Pandora has parental controls, which will add songs that don’t have any uncensored lyrics once activated.

Pandora and Spotify have remained some of the premier music services currently available. Since Pandora is only available in countries like the US, Australia, and NZ, Spotify is the winner as it is known worldwide and is critically acclaimed as the best music streaming platform.

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