In the following article, we put two of the most popular Internet radio services on the market against each other to help you decide which one is the best for your listening habits. A few years ago, Pandora was the only available choice in the town, so it faced no competition. But, today, there are many other competitors, with Slacker Radio being one of the most notable challengers to Pandora’s dominance. We will compare Slacker Radio vs Pandora based on several aspects, such as the app design and interface, song collection, features, and prices.
Unlike on-demand music streaming services, Internet radio services usually don’t really give you complete control over what you listen to. You can’t rewind or scrub forward on the currently playing song. The lack of control is a trade-off for the discovery-focused and free listening experience. Usually, people listen to Internet radio services when they want to discover new songs or when they are just bored with the popular songs.
Both Slacker Radio and Pandora allow you to create a radio station based on a selected song, artist, album, or genre. After the radio station is created, you will be able to tweak the playlist by upvoting and downvoting songs. An upvote means that you like the song, and the service will play the song more frequently and find similar songs. On the contrary, a downvote means you don’t like the song and the service will avoid playing it in the future. By using your feedback, the service fine-tunes the playlists and selections to give you exactly the songs that you want to hear.
Have a look : Slacker Radio vs Spotify.
App Design and Interface
Now, let’s see the comparison between the interfaces of Slacker Radio vs Pandora. They take totally different approaches. Slacker Radio’s homepage possesses a mix of white and gray variations on the wallpaper background, while the header and footer menus are deep blacks. The contrasting colors match very nicely; they give the app a beautiful and elegant monochromatic design.
The Now Playing menu on Slacker Radio is gorgeous. The background uses the album cover art of the currently playing song to create a sleek look. The play, skip, and back buttons are aesthetically appealing. There are transition effects when you switch between menus. All in all, Slacker Radio’s interface is awesome.
On the other hand, Pandora has a clean white background which is present almost all the time when you are searching for stations, viewing your profile or feed, or accessing the settings. However, Pandora’s interface may feel a little overwhelming because of the numerous tabs and shortcut menus. After a music station is selected, the interface will change its color theme to navy blue. It allows you to switch from the Now Playing screen to the homepage and vice versa, resulting in a convenient user experience.
When choosing a music service, one of the most commonly asked question is regarding how many songs that the service actually possesses. The larger the collection, the better. After all, we want to discover great music, and we will have a better chance of finding hidden gems with a bigger collection.
Slacker Radio holds the better edge here as it comes with a library of over 2.5 million songs. In addition, with Slacker Radio, you can search for song titles and listen to complete albums. On the other hand, Pandora only has a library of about 1 million songs.
Features and Capabilities
Let’s see the features and capabilities of Slacker Radio vs Pandora.Slacker Radio is an awesome service because it has not only Internet radio features, but also several useful on-demand music streaming capabilities. This is a great choice if you prefer to have more control on what you listen to.
The free version of Slacker Radio already allows you to search for a favorite artist, but it will only play similar titles instead of the actual artist. In addition, the free version is limited to just 6 skips per hour. And of course, there are quite many ads.
You can buy a premium subscription for Slacker Radio to remove the skip limit and ads. In addition, it will also enables you to play songs from a particular artist, listen to complete albums, and save songs for offline listening. It even allows you to stop, repeat, rewind, and fast-forward songs.
On the other hand, Pandora is more of a pure Internet radio service. It is a powerful music discovery tool; the selections are chosen using an algorithm engine that is built on the Music Genome Project. As the effect, it can give very good selections that are indeed similar to your favorite songs. Unfortunately, you can’t create a custom playlist, replay a song, or save for offline listening.
There are two unique features on Pandora: the sleeper timer and the alarm clock. The sleeper timer will automatically turn off the app after a period of time, which is great if you like to listen to some songs before you sleep. The alarm clock works pretty much like a common alarm app, except that it will wake you up to your favorite artist station.
Pandora’s free version also limits the users to only 6 skips per hour, and there are ads. You can purchase a premium subscription to increase the daily skips and remove the ads.
Finally, let’s see the subscription options and prices of Slacker Radio vs Pandora. In total, Slacker Radio has three subscription options. The free version is ad-supported, as explained above. The Slacker Radio Plus costs $3.99 per month to remove ads, remove the skip limit, and enable offline listening. The Slacker Radio Premium costs $9.99 per month to allow you to create custom playlists, play on-demand songs and albums, and bring the same benefits as the Plus subscription.
Pandora is quite simpler. The free version is ad-supported and is limited to just 6 skips per hour. There is just one subscription plan, the Slacker Radio One, which costs $4.99 per month or $36 per year to remove the ads and skip limit.
|- An Internet radio service with on-demand streaming features||- More of a pure Internet radio station with a great music recommendation engine|
|- Neat and elegant interface||- The interface may feel a little overwhelming at first|
|- Over 2.5 million songs||- Over 1 million songs|
|- On-demand songs and albums, custom playlists, offline listening||- Sleeper timer and alarm clock|
|- Has a free version, the Slacker Radio Plus ($3.99/month), the Slacker Radio Premium ($9.99/month)||- Has a free version, the Pandora One subscription costs $4.99/month or $36/year|
In the end, Slacker Radio is definitely the winner. This is a more powerful and versatile Internet radio service. Slacker Radio has a larger song library, and it offers several useful features such as the custom playlists and offline listening. When you discover a very good song, you certainly want to save it right away, right? Slacker Radio allows you to do so. Still, Pandora can be an alternative if you prefer a pure Internet radio service, as the music recommendation engine is great.