Pandora iOS update adds autopause, better buffering
The changes are meant to keep Pandora’s mobile radio playing when you
want it and turn it off when you don’t, as the company keeps the bite of
licensing costs limited to engaged listening.
Pandora’s latest iOS update includes improved buffering and an autopause
feature that stops radio playback when the iPhone listeners mute their
phones. It also includes “bug fixes and improvements to keep your music
playing as it should.”
In other words, the Internet’s top radio provider is doing everything it
can to keep music playing when you want to listen and turn it off when
Pandora pays out more than half its revenue in royalties and is doing
everything it can to be sure that it’s not paying fees on tunes that are
falling on deaf ears.
A quick test by CNET failed to get the autopause feature to engage, however.
Pandora’s update may also be a response to iTunes Radio, the long-awaited, recently launched Apple answer to Internet radio. One of the key features that distinguish iTunes Radio from Pandora is Apple’s ability to offer greater control over what listeners choose to hear.
That won’t change unless Pandora decides to upend its model, abandoning a
simple-but-constrained licensing system set up by Congress for direct
deals with labels like Apple did.