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Pandora Touts OEM Growth

Bulk of listening shifts from desktop to mobile

The number of cars featuring Pandora will likely snowball in the latter part of the decade.

So says company Vice President Dominic Paschel.

Two years ago at the Consumer Electronics Show three automakers featured Pandora in their large-screen infotainment systems through a smartphone connection. Nineteen automotive brands do now, Paschel said, speaking to the Telsey Advisory Group at its fall consumer conference in Las Vegas. He mentioned that those that do not feature the Internet audio service could be described as operating at a competitive disadvantage.

That compares to 28 OEM automotive brands that either offer now or are committed to offering factory installed HD Radio technology in their infotainment systems, we reported from the Radio Show.

Pandora’s listenership is experiencing the most growth from mobile devices, a shift from its early desktop listening roots. That’s because smartphones are replaced after some 18 months while the replacement cycle for a car in the U.S. remains seven years.

The average Pandora listener listens some 20 hours per month. The company thinks that can grow to 56 hours per month, according to Paschel.

Terrestrial radio too, believes mobile offers growth. Clear Channel President of National Sales Jim Castelli said at the recent Radio And Internet Newsletter conference in Dallas that Clear Channel’s iHeartradio has 1,500 custom stations and 10 million registered users.