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Tech Talk: iTunes Radio vs. Pandora

by Doug Delony / KHOU 11 News

Posted on June 17, 2013 at 12:32 PM

Updated Monday, Jun 17 at 12:34 PM

HOUSTON -– If you’re already satisfied (or addicted) to Pandora or Spotify, is it worth making the switch to Apple’s upcoming iTunes Radio?

The new service was unveiled last week, and quickly broke down some of the differences.

Apple's advantage: One of the biggest things that iTunes Radio has going for it is the fact that it’s made for the iPhone and the iPad. This brings a lot of neat little tricks, including the ability to use Siri to control your music. In addition, you can buy the songs you like while you’re listening to them – right in your iTunes account.

Apple's disadvantage: Services like Pandora and Spotify are more widely available, as you can use them on pretty much any mobile device or computer. On the other hand, iTunes Radio is limited to Apple devices or Windows PCs running iTunes.

The cost: Both Pandora and iTunes radio have free options, but if you want the music commercial-free, iTunes Radio will cost you $25 per year. Pandora costs a little more at $36 per year.

Music selection: To the real music buff, it’s the music that matters, right? So which one has a better selection? It would be a matter of opinion really, but we know Apple has struck deals with record labels to offer music both old and new. This is something Pandora hasn’t done, and because of this, with Pandora you’re limited to only 12 song skips per 24 hours, and you can’t rewind a song like you’ll be able to do on iTunes Radio.

Even if you love your current streaming solution, you might as well give iTunes Radio a try. After all, it’s free. It’s due out sometime in the fall.

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Questions? Comments? Feel free to reach out to Doug on Facebook ( or Twitter (@DougDelonyKHOU)