The music streaming wars are hitting a new battleground as streaming radio service Pandora has inked a new deal with Uber, set to challenge the program the alternative taxi service already has in place with rival on-demand music streaming service Spotify. Meanwhile, Apple Music has landed another in a stream of recent exclusives, this time set to feature the latest album from popular rapper Dreezy.
As the summer days continue to heat up, so do the ever-intensifying music streaming wars. The latest salvo in the battle between the two largest streamers was just fired by Pandora, which is taking direct aim at rival Spotify by partnering with Uber in an attempt to win the ears of drivers and passengers of the service.
Effective immediately, Uber drivers in all territories in which Pandora operates (namely the U.S., Australia and New Zealand) can access Pandora while in the Uber app. In addition, the service runs ad-free for the next six months.
The ability to use Pandora without exiting the Uber app is a huge competitive advantage for the service, as currently Uber's Spotify integration requires the driver not only to exit the Uber app, but to hand his or her phone directly to the passenger, who can then make a selection from the Spotify catalog.
Pandora hopes the simplicity and ease of use of its Uber program makes it popular with drivers who don't appreciate the complications of using Spotify. Pandora will also collect some valuable listener data during the program, which is also designed to collect and send information on listening habits to the company.
Time will only tell how customers react, however, as Spotify retains an advantage in that, as an on-demand streaming service, users can listen to any specific song or artist they choose. Pandora, on the other hand, is a streaming radio provider, not an on-demand listening service. That means customers will be limited to choosing stations in various genres or based upon artists of their choice but not necessarily playing tracks recorded by those artists.
Meanwhile, upstart streaming music competitor Apple Music and Interscope have announced a deal. Adding to its string of recent exclusives in the hip hop/R&B genre, which have included Drake's blockbuster Views album and Chance the Rapper's popular Coloring Book collection, Apple Music has inked a deal with rapper Dreezy to stream his new CD No Hard Feelings for a one-week exclusive window beginning on July 15.
Exclusives are shaping up to be the next big battleground in the on-demand streaming wars, as Spotify just hired music executive Troy Carter, Lady Gaga's former manager, to focus on developing exclusives for the service.