Pandora listening hours remain strong against new iTunes Radio

It looks as though the introduction of Apple Inc.'s new streaming music service hasn’t thrown Pandora Media Inc.'s rhythm off.

Oakland-based Pandora said people spent 1.47 billion hours listening to its Internet radio offering in October, an increase of 8% compared with the previous month and up 18% over last year.

Also, Pandora’s share of the total radio listening in the United States has increased to 8.06%, compared with 6.61% a year ago.


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This comes after the September launch of Apple’s iTunes Radio, which the Cupertino, Calif.-based tech giant recently said has drawn about 20 million users.

Shares of Pandora rose by more than 7% to $27.59 in midday trading Tuesday in New York.

“October audience metrics have been a major focus for investors as they reflect the first full month since Apple’s release of iTunes Radio,” said JPMorgan analyst Doug Anmuth in a note to clients. “Overall, we believe the metrics suggest Pandora has held up well during the launch.”

It’s worth noting that Pandora’s uptick in listener hours was partly driven by the elimination of its 40-hour-a-month cap on mobile listening shortly before iTunes Radio went live.

Also, its number of active listeners fell from September to 70.9 million, suggesting that some of the less dedicated listeners tried out Apple’s new service, according to Anmuth.


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