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Pandora asks to pull MetroPandora, third-party API on Windows and Windows Phone

Pandora

There is an official Pandora app for Windows Phone, but before that came out, we relied on third party applications like MetroRadio. Metro Pandora, the SDK that third party applications have relied on has just been pulled due to infringement notice from Pandora. The complaint will go undisputed.

Pandora’s DMCA Notice mentions the unauthorized use of their registered trademarks and API. We can’t blame Pandora for protecting their property.

Pandora DMCA

If you love Pandora, you can continue using the official app for Windows Phone. You can download it here from the Windows Phone Store.

What this means for third party app isn't too clear, but we're expecting apps like MetroRadio to remain on the Store unless they too are notified.

Have any thoughts on Pandora's request? Sound off in the comments!

Source: Justin Angel

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Reader comments

Pandora asks to pull MetroPandora, third-party API on Windows and Windows Phone

96 Comments

Companies really have a right to do this. I just hope they do it after we have a working official app on the store. (Like in the case of Pandora, it's fine; snapchat, not so much.)

It's fine unless you are still under contract on WP7.8, in which case the official Pandora app does not work, but apps like MetroRadio do. If they pull MetroRadio too I'm gonna be pretty pissed off.

This is why i hesitate to try/buy 3rd party apps. Even Rudy's. They are too good to go unnoticed by their respective official conterparts & run the risk of being pulled out. :(

It's a buck for US users but 55 bucks for Indians. Though, I must say that we should support developers like Rudy who produce excellent apps. I have never used Metro Pandora so can't comment on that.

One of Rudy's apps was good enough to be officially endorsed by the service: Wikipedia. I wish more companies would wake up and do this, and even offer to hire the dev to provide ongoing support. Cheaper than creating a team of their own if they don't have one. I have found at least one app that was farmed out.

I fully agree with you on this. Especially when the third party apps are better than what the company has released on ios and android.

I don't use any Pandora too, but I understand that 3rd party apps may destroy the official apps specially if the 3rd party is better than the official app.

It's not just that, it's also that the service owner has less control over the use, licensing and retention of their data. This is especially important when it comes to rights protected media; if Pandora can't maintain control over their API then they're breaking the contracts they have with the record labels and run the risk of losing important music sources.

I get that they have to protect their services.. but if its just that the third party app is better than theirs then just step the fuck up and improve the official app. Don't shoot down the other, that's just wrong.

I agree just that in this case what makes the others better it's not possible to do for Pandora. The reason why metro radio is better is because it has unlimited skips and no voice ads. Pandora can't do that and must have that 5 songs limit. Also their revenue comes from those ads so taking them out ruins their profit. I wouldn't like to see metro radio go away :( but at the same time I understand why it would have to.

Totally understand Pandora protecting their IP - i work in licensing for a software company myself. But it is disappointing that rather than be incented to make a better first party app (dont use it so I have no idea if its any good), they just remove the ability for third parties to make any (and possibly losing customers loyal to said third party apps).

It's also that they have to protect the music that the record labels have licensed to them. A non-enforceable API is likely a breach of their contracts with the music industry.

Same here, just started last month. Good audio quality and mix downloads for those times I'm out camping, wheeling or fishing with no towers in site make it worth the fee.

I haven't found anything better than xbox music. All the music one could handle for 100$ a year is a great bargain. Although it could be better. I wish it was more like iTunes in the cloud where if the music you own they don't have, it gets uploaded to the cloud for you to stream.

Not very well. And unlike itunes match, it only matches songs and they can only be redownloaded as drm protected
useless. I hope they fix that or i will need to keep itunes until that day.

They can only match songs that they have if they don't have the mp3 than of course they can't give it to you

Just what would you like to be able to do with it if it didn't have DRM and be honest don't hate it to hate it.
Also if you say burn to a cd I will slap the shit out of you.

I am paying that too but 90£ a year is not really a bargain. Would prefer it being bundled with Xbox video somehow though

Exactly.
I hate the fact that they separate their artist and songs in that format. Hella cheap and it hurts my eyes. I already spend enough time looking through spreadsheets, I don't need to see more of iTunes bullshit lists while I'm trying to relax and pick a song/artist out.
Which takes me to how Zune was set up. Seriously, why did MS had to go a screw up something that didn't need fixing?

This seems warranted and there are many lousy apps out there enticing people desperate for a particular service.

However, for every understandable act like this, there are just as many companies unwilling to put in the effort or resources to create an official app. Perfect example is Google who recently stated there were not a significant number of Windows users who use Google services. Head slap.

Judging by the "i don't know what Pandora is" comments (neither do i)
It seems Pandora did this so people will here about pandora

But that makes it an even stupider comment. If Pandora is US only, then why would they create a scene to gain notoriety outside the US?

Ouch. I would think there could be some goodwill between Pandora and MetroRadio. A first developer to apply the shared API and made (IMO) first awesome app starting in WP7.

I'm all for companies protecting IP, but they should have a long time ago and not when it suits them after they release their official app.

Furthermore, I remember there being a 1 year no advertisement limitation. Pandora is likely looking to cash in and push ads to the app soon.

I hope that MetroRadio sticks around, especially on Windows 8, since there is still no official Pandora app there.

As long as there is an effective 1st part app, then I completely agree, the company should pursue protecting their IP. However, things like what Google did with YouTube, and even what Instagram was doing for a while was bullshit.

Couldn't agree more! I have these YouTube apps: HTC, MS, LazyWorm, Supertube, & Metrotube. Which one do I use? The YouTube mobile website...

Pandora is losing money everyday. Same with Twitter. They don't have a problem with third party apps, but it's the first step they have to take before downsizing their product on their end.

Most of the features found in independent apps are beneficial to the user, but not to the company in question. And the thing that ends up happening is people requesting them on the official app. Why add something that only 5,000 of your millions upon millions of users won't use.

If I recall correctly, Pandora's official response on porting to WP7 the other year was "That OS is a joke, I hate it and refuse to support it".

So, yeah. Fuck them.

The truth is companies like Pandora or Instagram use the third party apps to test and build a audience for their products. Then when they make a official app they don't need them anymore. So some companies may keep third party apps longer than others but eventually they will all have to go as they may start to hurt the official app.

No unlimited skips, you'll have to pay them to be able to do that and to get rid of their commercials.....their highly irritating commercials.

Maybe they should publish an app on windows 8 and they wouldn't have to worry bout third party competition.... Just a wild thought

I totally get that its their product and they don't want third party apps because of that, but they have to look why these third party apps exist. Because theirs flat out is blah, boring, and frankly sucks. MetroRadio and even more so, WPRadionet not only do what their app does, but WPRadionet LOOKS GOOD doing it. Your being out done by some guy with his PC, in his family room. Hire the guy, have him rehash your boring app, and maybe people would rather use the original product. People go to these third party apps because they look better and/or work better. Same thing is happening with Twitter. The official app sucks, so we have everyone using these third party apps that don't bore us to death.

WPradioNet was my goto on x7 days.. It had turned some heads with the great implementaion of artwork and UI, the dev was active in responding to issues and suggestions to.

I've heard of Pandora... Yes, that's it! It's another crAAP amongst the hundreds (thousands) of crAPPs NOT available in Portugal. Why did I had to like Nokias...??

It would be generous for a company to perhaps offer an amnesty, for long standing apps; seeing as those apps create an installed user base, and hype, prior to the arrival of an official app...

Thanks for all your hard work Justin, through your efforts users have had a viable alternative and pretty decent one to boot.

I like metro radio mostly because they allow you unlimited track skips. Mostly just listen to my own music though so i don't use data.

Some of the responses here are puzzling. Pandora isn't necessarily against 3rd party apps, but the 3rd party apps are providing access to a PAID service for free. Each time you play a song on one of these 3rd party apps you are costing Pandora money. Normally it'd be paid for by ads but you're not getting them.

Pandora has a legitimate claim here. Its official app is available for WP, after all. The same can't be said for Google and all its apps.

Pandora request is due to infringement. It is ok to have a third party app but it must be clean. Every other company would have taken the same action.