Pandora is no doubt a staple on our Android devices— thanks to the ability to listen to what is seemingly endless hours of music every month. Unfortunately, it appears that users may need to adjust how often they listen to Pandora’s music service on any given month as it has imposed a limit to free listening to 40 hours per month. Using the Pandora blog, founder Tim Westergren offers some reasoning for why the company had to make the important change. He highlights that Pandora’s per-track royalty rates have increased more than 25% over the last 3 years, including 9% in 2013 alone and worse– the royalty rates are scheduled to increase an additional 16% over the next two years. Essentially, the company had to reluctantly institute a 40-hour monthly listening limit in order to help manage the ever-growing costs without interrupting the general service too much for listeners.
Fortunately, the limit will generally not affect most users. According to Westergren, the limit will only affect less than 4% of Pandora’s total active monthly users. Moreover, the average listener will spend roughly 20 hours on average listening to music across all devices on any given month. So in essence, this new policy is not too noticeable for most of you out there. However, for the 4% of you who may be expressing some concern, will have some pretty nifty alternatives available: listen to unlimited music on your desktop or laptop computers instead, pay 99¢ for unlimited listening for the remainder of that month or just break down and subscribe to Pandora One for unlimited listening and no advertising.
So yeah— aside from a new monthly limit which won’t affect most users anyways— everything else with the Pandora app is pretty much status quo. It may be a good thing anyways since you know— most of us have to deal with those pesky data caps on our wireless service anyways.