Pandora has recently taken to blaming Spotify for the downfall of the music industry, but on Thursday its leadership picked a new target: Steve Jobs.
On an investor’s call, Pandora CFO Mike Herring said the following, according to Billboard: “Steve Jobs eviscerated the music industry with the launch of iTunes and it’s been downhill ever since. And the download was supposed to save it, that didn’t happen.”
So the rise of piracy didn’t have anything to do with it?
Herring also took the time to take shots at Apple Music, saying “no one subscribes” even though it lives on hundreds of millions of phones. “Well, I guess a few million people do,” he added. “but the reality is you want to get people to choose to do, that is a much bigger trick. You have to have a great product.”
This attack against Apple represents a bit of a departure for Pandora, who has recently stuck to claiming Spotify is burning down the industry by giving people access to free music on-demand — which Apple Music actually doesn’t do. Pandora CEO Brian McAndrews has called this practice an unsustainable business model, and sees it as a crushing force in the industry.
McAndrews thinks on-demand music should only exist in a premium streaming tier, something Herring also hinted Thursday is Pandora’s ultimate plan. Many artists, like Taylor Swift, agree with McAndrews’ sentiment, and it does look like Spotify is looking at placing more limitations on its free tier.
Pandora does have some decent points about the fate of the music industry, but it also seems that its leadership is simply venting their frustrations about Pandora’s rocky last few months by blaming all of its competitors.