Pandora (P) on Watch After (AMZN) Intoduces Amazon Music Unlimited

October 12, 2016 9:43 AM EDT

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Pandora (NYSE: P) was in focus Wednesday after (NASDAQ: AMZN) announced its new streaming service, Amazon Music Unlimited. Shares opened slightly lower.

Amazon's new service will also compete with Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Spotify.

Press release:

Amazon today introduced Amazon Music Unlimited, an on-demand music service that redefines music streaming by putting a catalog of tens of millions of songs and thousands of hand-curated playlists and personalized stations not just at the tips of your fingers, but also on the tip of your tongue. Amazon Music Unlimited makes discovering new music or listening to favorites easier and more fun than ever with a redesigned Amazon Music app as well as with innovative new Alexa voice controls.

“Amazon Music Unlimited brings real value to the millions of people who are already Prime members, with a choice of subscribing for only $7.99 a month or even $79 per year. Plus, customers are going to love Amazon Music’s all-new app for iOS, Android and desktop,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon Founder and CEO. “And if you want a sense of the future of voice-controlled music, go ahead and ask Alexa for a free Music Unlimited trial, and play around on your Echo. If you don’t know the name of a song but know a few lyrics, if you want to hear songs from a specific decade, or even if you’re looking for music to match your mood, just ask.”

More for Prime Members

Prime members now have more choice than ever when it comes to music streaming. Millions of Prime members already stream music on Amazon Prime every month, making Amazon Music one of the most popular music streaming services in the world. The Prime catalog has grown to more than two million songs and over one thousand hand-curated playlists and personalized stations. Today, with the launch of Amazon Music Unlimited, Prime members who want even more music have access to a catalog of tens of millions of songs and thousands of hand-curated playlists and personalized stations at a breakthrough Prime member price of $7.99/month or $79/year (which equals only $6.58/month).

Even Better on Echo

Millions of customers have fallen in love with Alexa and have given Echo over 28,000 5-star reviews on Amazon. Since the debut of Echo nearly two years ago, music consistently has been one of the most popular activities on Echo; now Amazon Music has reimagined music listening on Echo with intuitive new Alexa voice controls that turn your Echo into the ultimate personalized jukebox. No searching or browsing required…just ask. And with the advanced machine learning of Alexa, the Amazon Music experience will become more conversational and personalized all the time.

Ready to listen to Sia? Just ask, “Alexa, play Sia” and Alexa will create a playlist of Sia’s most popular songs
Want to hear the latest hit by Green Day? Just ask, “Alexa, play Green Day’s new song” and Alexa will play their latest single, “Bang Bang”
Have words to a song stuck in your head but can’t remember the name of the song? All you have to do is say a few words and Alexa will play the song. For example, just ask, “Alexa, play the song that goes, ‘I was doing just fine before I met you’” and Alexa will play, “Closer” by The Chainsmokers
Want to re-live the music from your college days? You can ask Alexa to play hit music from a decade or a specific year or month. Just ask, “Alexa, play the most popular rock from the 90s” and Alexa will take you back in time
Feeling down and need a pick-me-up? Just ask, “Alexa play ‘Happy Music’” and Alexa will choose a playlist based on your listening history like “Feel-Good Indie,” “R&B Fun” or “Pop To Make you Feel Better”
Want to listen to early catalog from a favorite artist? Just ask, “Alexa, play Van Halen from the 70s” and Alexa will play tracks from the LA rockers’ first couple of albums
Having friends over? Just ask, “Alexa, play music for a dinner party” and Alexa will choose a playlist based on your listening history like “Dinner With Friends,” “Cooking With 90s Hip-Hop” or “Indie Dinner Party”
Want to be surprised? Just ask, “Alexa, play the Song of the Day” to hear a song picked daily by Amazon Music editors. Song of the Day also features a DJ intro with fun facts about the song and an outro with suggestions for further listening
Not sure what to play? Just ask, “Alexa, play music” and Alexa will find something personalized just for you

Amazon Music on Alexa also brings fans and artists closer together with behind-the-scenes artist commentary about their music, called Side-by-Sides. Customers can simply ask, “Alexa, play Side-by-Side with OneRepublic” and Ryan Tedder will play and comment on songs from OneRepublic’s latest album Oh My My. Side-by-Sides are available exclusively on Amazon Music from top artists such as The Chainsmokers, Jason Aldean, Lindsey Stirling, Norah Jones, OneRepublic and Kongos – with more being added all the time.

Amazon is offering an exclusive “for Echo” subscription plan for only $3.99/month, with full access to Amazon Music Unlimited on a single Echo, Echo Dot or Amazon Tap. To start a free trial to the “for Echo” plan, just ask “Alexa, start my Music Unlimited free trial.” If you decide later that you want to enjoy Amazon Music Unlimited on multiple devices, including Fire devices, iOS, Android, Web, PC, Mac, Sonos and more, it’s easy to upgrade to a standard plan for an additional $4.00/month for Prime members ($6.00/month non-Prime customers).

Sleek and Intuitive New App

The Amazon Music app has been redesigned with a beautiful, new interface that emphasizes artist images and album art and puts music discovery and playback front and center. Key features of the app include “Home,” which showcases selections by Amazon Music editors to help customers stay up-to-date on the music they love and what’s trending and popular; “Recommended,” where customers can find personalized music suggestions powered by Amazon’s recommendation technology; and “Now Playing,” where synchronized lyrics make it easy to follow along to your favorite music. The Amazon Music app is available on Fire devices, iOS, Android, Web, PC and Mac.

Coming Soon

A new “For Family” subscription plan will be coming this year, allowing up to six family members simultaneous access to Amazon Music Unlimited for $14.99/month or $149/year. Amazon Music Unlimited also will be available for customers in the U.K., Germany and Austria this year.

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