At this pace, iTunes Radio beats Pandora in less than a month

“Apple gloated a little Monday when it announced iTunes Radio had notched more than 11 million unique listeners in the first five days since its September 18 launch on iOS 7 and the desktop iTunes software,” Joan E. Solsman reports for CNET. “That figure is nearly four times the number of unique listeners that Rhapsody — the subscription-based music service that pioneered streaming when launched in 2001 — had in July, according to ComScore. Rhapsody’s unique listeners numbered just 2.89 million in that month. So much for first-mover advantage.”

“This pace of iTunes Radio listener growth — 11 million in five days — also puts it on track to surpass the current leader of Internet radio in less than 30 days,” Solsman reports. “Pandora, by far the biggest streaming radio service, had 64.9 million unique listeners in July, compared with 20.2 million for No. 2 Spotify, 14.4 million for iHeartRadio, and 5.4 million for Slacker. If Apple can keep up its momentum, it will have 66 million unique listeners in 30 days post-launch.”

MacDailyNews Take: One issue with Solsman’s math: She’s not comparing like numbers. The Pandora Radio subscriber number counts the U.S., Australia, and New Zealand, all three countries in which Pandora is available. Apple’s iTunes Radio is U.S.-only for the time being. As iTunes Radio continues its roll out in the U.S. with iOS 7 adoption and then rolls out to Australia, New Zealand, and beyond, Pandora will quickly become a tiny dot in Apple’s rearview mirror.

Solsman reports, “‘While more high quality digital radio players may eat into terrestrial radio listening, given the quality of the iTunes Radio experience, we have a hard time believing it will not eat into Pandora’s market share of active monthly users and time spent listening,’ BTIG Research analyst Rich Greenfield wrote in a note last week.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related articles:
Pandora drops as much as 12% on Apple’s iTunes Radio competition – September 23, 2013
Apple releases iTunes 11.1 with iTunes Radio – September 18, 2013
Pandora: iTunes Radio roadkill – September 17, 2013
Apple’s iTunes Radio is going to put Pandora into a world of hurt – September 14, 2013
Anticipating customer surprise, Apple begins training support staff on iOS 7 and iTunes Radio – August 29, 2013
Pandora would be wise not to write-off Apple’s potent iTunes Radio – August 26, 2013
Apple’s iTunes Radio to debut in September with McDonald’s, Nissan, P&G, Pepsi sponsorships – August 21, 2013
Apple’s new iTunes Radio is designed to be the largest streaming radio service – July 13, 2013
Apple announces iTunes Radio – launches this fall – June 10, 2013


  1. iTunes Radio, please come to Canada soon!

    That said, I do wonder how this will affect the small internet radio stations. I’m not usually a fan of “big box store” shopping, but in this case, that’s iTunes Radio and it will consume many of the smaller guys. It would be the first place that I would turn because I know the quality will be excellent and the tight integration. Plus, as an iTunes Match subscriber, I would get it ad-free. So I’m split, but I think I’ll cave. Gimme my iRadio!!

  2. I have a free SiriusXM subscription in my new Ford Truck.
    [ never used once ]

    AM/FM Radio.
    [ never used once ]

    CD Player.
    [ never used once ]

    [ used until … ]

    iTunes Radio + iPod Player.
    [ installed on 4 devices and used nonstop ]

  3. Is iTunes radio just the first wave of Apple supplying HD video on demand too. Maybe in that new 4K HDTV format streamed down to the local Mac Pro in the living room to be streamed the the new 4K HDTV Sony TV sets you have in your home. You do know that 4K HDTV media does not fit on a Blue-ray disc. It is streamed from a source.

  4. Pandora should never have reached close to $30 a share this year. Take one look at its balance sheet and you know something is rotten in Denmark. When you see a profitless company that has close to 100% institutional ownership it’s a hedge fund fraud in the making. Those investors say Pandora can’t be touched by iTunes Radio? That’s insane. The big advertisers are going with Apple, not Pandora Media. Apple will pass Pandora’s customer base in months and be much better monetized. And those hedge fund investors will still say they have no fears whatsoever from iTunes Radio.

    They’re nothing but liars. Apple’s iOS is where the real money will be. That’s where the real growth will be as iTunes Radio is adopted by every Apple device capable of running iOS 7 and Mountain Lion. That’s a heck of a lot of devices that will put Pandora to rest.

  5. While I do like iTunes Radio I do have a couple issues with it.
    1. I find Pandora streams more consistently with a better buffer than iTunes Radio

    2. There is no shuffle so I can’t shuffle the stations I like for a variety of music – unless I’m missing something

    It is still the first out for Apple with this so I do look forward to seeing it improve overtime.

  6. Maybe, just don’t know how to do it, but I can only see my stations on my iPhone in album view. They’re only sorted by date added as well. This will be a huge pain when I have over 20 stations like in Pandora

  7. I currently have over 60 Pandora stations (some of them get a lot more use than others). iTunes already carries hundreds of streams. I have tried iTunes Radio, and will probably continue to use it, but so far, I do not think that I will stop using Pandora, or other streaming providers like,,,, and others. Different providers have different mixes of artists when you compare similar channels. I switch from one stream to another to provide variety. Although iTunes Radio will now be part of my list of streaming providers, I doubt that it will overtake or replace the others.

  8. Who cares about pandora. I want my terrestrial radio back. Where did it go? I upgraded to iTunes 11.1 and my news and talk radio stations along with some damn music good stations from Europe are GONE. What dipwod made that decision???????? FAIL!

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