In the past I have written about not allowing the XM/Sirius satellite merger take place. I figured it would be bad for consumers. However a single website changed my mind a few months back. That website is actually a streaming radio station which allows you to play the customized music you like. It is called Pandora and it is an absolutely great idea.
About a month ago or so I realized that any wireless broadband service provider could stream Pandora radio and compete quite nicely with XM or Sirius. In fact I used to listen to Sirius radio on my computer but since I discovered Pandora I have found this site is much better at playing songs I like.
The ability to customize the station infinitely by voting on songs and artists is the site’s greatest strength.
There are still benefits to listening to Sirius or XM such as having stations predefined for but on Pandora, the more I listen, the better the service gets.
So I retract my prior comments inferring a merger between Sirius and XM Satellite Radio would be a bad idea. In fact, as long as the wireless service providers and traditional radio stations can compete with satellite radio, the merger can take place without too much harm being done.
It is really fantastic that a single website can disrupt an industry to such a degree that it changes the competitive landscape.
I want to give tremendous credit to AT&T who has partnered with Pandora before I had a chance to even write about my idea. The cost? Just $8.99/month after a free five day trial.
This is a great move for Pandora and AT&T and it also helps me answer the secret question I have when I listed to Pandora radio – How do they monetize this site anyway?