Weekend Perspective: Pandora, Android cars, Nielsen’s 2013 summary, RAIN interviews

Weekend Perspective 01

Welcome to Weekend Perspective, a quick and concise summary

January 6 – 10

Pandora was all over the news this week, releasing its December audience metrics (up across the board) and revealing a new advertising stream to cars where Pandora is factory-installed. Result of this one-two PR punch? Pandora stock shot upward, valuing the company with a $6.5-billion market cap. Our analysis of Pandora vs. iTunes Radio was the week’s most-read story.

On the broadcast side, Clear Channel’s iHeartMusic also made gains in the connected car, with announced placements in Jaguar, Volvo, and Kia models.

The most far-reaching connected-car news emanating from the Consumer Electronics Show was Google’s Open Automotive Alliance initiative. Android cars are on the way, possibly this year.

In advertising news, HARMAN’s Aha Radio announced a partnership with ad tech provider AdsWizz, which will result in uniquely targeted messages delivered to drivers.

Several studies were released this week. Nielsen‘s 2013 report indicated that streaming was way up, and download sales inched down in the first-ever year-over-year loss. Clear Channel and MediaVest surveyed users to understand how they use different listening platforms. Borrell Associates released an in-depth report analyzing the previous five year and projecting into the next five — mobile pureplay growth is called out. And Spotify unleashed a dense academic study of ecnomic theory, the gist of which is that ad revenue is expected to grow in 2014.

In the world of music services, Xbox Music finally added offline listening to its app features, bringing it to parity with competing music subscription plans. Playlister Whyd opened to the public — it’s like a Pinterest for music. Emmis-owned NextRadio, which brings broadcast reception to smartphones, is headed for the connected car, according to CEO Jeff Smulyan.

RAIN News featured two conversations this week: Faisal Sultan, an Internet radio entrepreneur who helped develop ShoutCast, and Rob Greenlee, a podcasting pioneer.

Brad Hill