By Real Simple
Updated August 09, 2011
Advertisement
Website:pandora.com.Cost: Free with commercials and limited song-skipping; $36 a year for no commercials and more song-skipping.How it Works: Create personalized radio channels based on favorite songs, artists, and composers. There are also preset genre stations, such as 80s Pop, Classic Rock, and Today’s Hits.Cool Perks: You can use it with social networks, like Facebook and Twitter, but you aren’t required to. More than 15,000 comedy tracks.Drawbacks: Smallest song collection in the bunch (about 900,000 tunes); no rewinding; you can’t merge your own songs with its library.Best for: Tech novices who want a service that’s easy to use.
| Credit: Pandora

Streams music channels—not a search engine

Rating: ***

Cost: Free; premium version: $36/year

Pros:

  • Stations based on your favorite artists
  • Technology predicts songs you’ll like

Cons:

  • Can’t skip to specific songs
  • Songs loop after a while
  • Only 40 free hours per month