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Pandora Makes Gains in Australia, New Zealand

Has some 2 million users; now part of Ford Sync AppLink in some Australian models

Pandora says it has signed up 255,000 registered users of its Internet audio service in New Zealand.

Pandora Commercial Director Melanie Reece believes the company would consider adding news, weather, traffic and sports reports to its music service, depending on the results of a trial about to start in the United States, reports the New Zealand Times.

Some half of registered users log on in any 30-day period; on average they listen to Pandora for 2.5 hours a session, according to Reece. She says unlike streaming music services Spotify or Rdio, Pandora doesn’t require subscribers to select tracks or playlists. Listeners can choose from themed channels as its algorithm adapts to listener’s wishes.

Pandora launched in New Zealand and Australia in December 2012.

The Internet audio service is in Australia as well and has announced its relationship with Ford there. Pandora is part of Ford’s Sync AppLink, which connects drivers to their smartphone apps in the dash. In Australia, Pandora is available on the Ford Fiesta ST, Focus ST and Ford Kuga lineup, with more models planned for early 2015.

Ford Asia Pacific Multimedia Systems Supervisor Adrian McGibbon cites Pandora’s “solid footprint” of more than 2 million registered listeners across Australia and New Zealand for its brand extension.