While we’re going to end 2015 with more streaming services than we started it with, the landscape is certainly changing. It was announced today that Rdio will file for bankruptcy and shut down, with Pandora acquiring “key assets” of the on-demand streaming service in a deal valued at $75 million. Having existed for 15 years, Pandora is the most popular non-YouTube streaming service (we’re not counting YouTube Red, which just launched). The money that Pandora is paying will include technology and intellectulal property, and many Rdio employees will be offered the chance to work at Pandora.
While Pandora is popular, it hasn’t really kept up with newer streaming services, like Spotify and Apple Music. Neither did Rdio, which like Pandora had ad-supported listening as well as premium versions of their radio streaming service. But with there being no free tier for Apple Music, Pandora, with 78 million listeners, feel that they’ll be able to make continued inroads, with the new service launching in late 2016. Right now, Pandora is only available in the United States, New Zealand and Australia, as compared to 100 countries where Rdio is currently available. Those who invested in Rdio are the big losers, as it had raised at least $125 million total and was at one point valued at $500 million. In other not surprising streaming news, Beats Music is shutting down at the end of the month, as Apple bought the company