Pandora internet radio review by Jack Byers

Pandora is an internet radio station. It allows you to build your own custom radio stations. To do so you base it around an artist, a song, or a particular genre. Pandora then plays a selection of songs for you with the occasional advertisement. You can refine your station by liking and disliking the songs that come on so that Pandora gets a better idea of what the radio station is to be about. This allows you over time to refine your radio station so that particular types of songs normally associated with your radio station get phased out. Similarly, you can later add tags to your radio station to add diversity to the station if you find it isn't giving you much to listen to.

I have made several radio stations on Pandora. My first was a classical music station based on Shostakovitch, over time this refined down to particular sounds i was enjoying and began to include music from Satie, Chopin, and a few new age songs. I have used that particular station for years and am quite pleased with its variety and get introduced to a song I've never heard almost every time i listen to it. Conversely I created a radio station on Pandora based on Beer Barrel Polka. This station was initially very good, but even with up-voting most of the songs I would hear, it tended to cycle through the same 30 songs fairly quickly. This gives you an idea of the limitation of Pandora. It is only as useful as the size of its database. An unpopular music genre like Polka is unlikely to have much in Pandora's archives to cycle through.

Another limitation to Pandora is the lack of actual programming. While I can program Pandora to cycle through radio stations and adjust the music content I will hear on a particular listening session, there aren't traditional 'programs' so to speak. While often I just want to get to the music, sometimes I want to hear the editorial commentary on the music I am listening to, or to get a bit of news info. These options don't really exist on Pandora but this is just the nature of the beast.

In summary, Pandora is great for what it does; provide a source of free music content suited to each users preferences. However it has a limited database for more obscure genres and lacks any real 'shows' to punch things up. Essentially, while Pandora is sort of billed as internet radio, it is merely internet available music stations.

Rating: 8.3/10


pandora.txt · Last modified: 2014/11/07 15:40 by
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