Pandora earnings hit a bum note thanks to Apple Music

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Tired of Apple Music's playlists? Try something even more indie.
Apple Music is claiming victims.
Photo: Jim Merithew/Cult of Mac

With Pandora CEO Brian McAndres dismissing Apple Music back in July as nothing to worry about, Pandora stock took an after-hours beating yesterday, falling by as much as 21 percent to just $15.25.

The reason? A poorly-received quarterly earnings report, thought to be the result of would-be customers trying (you guessed it!) Apple Music instead of the ad-supported Internet radio company.

The number of hours of music streamed by Pandora grew by a minuscule 3 percent in the last quarter, which is a fall of 25 percent from one year ago. The number of listeners also grew by 2 percent to 79.4 million, which is down from the 5 percent gain seen last year.

In all, Pandora recorded revenue of $311.6 million, which was below the $314 million predictions from Wall Street. It recorded a loss of 40 cents per share compared to profit forecasts of 10 cents.

This month, Pandora also confirmed that it will pay $90 million to settle a royalty payments issue related to pre-1972 music.

To be fair to Pandora, it was competing with Apple during the company’s three-month free trial period, which likely snapped up a lot of customers who will now return to other free services now that the trial period is over. Apple recently announced that it has around 6.5 million paying subscribers.

Still, it’s another illustration of why it’s best not to denounce whatever Apple’s latest product is. From the iPhone to the Apple Watch to Apple Music, we see this over and over again, and it never seems to end well for the people claiming Apple won’t be able to compete.

What is it they say about people who ignore history being bound to repeat it?

Source: NYPost