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Aussie Telco Optus To Allow Prepaid Customers To Stream Music For Free

There's some great news if you're an Optus customer. Starting from May 2nd, they will be zero-rating a number of online streaming services for their prepaid customers, allowing them to listen to as much music as they want without racking up a heavy data bill.

Optus is making this available to new and current customers on My Prepaid Ultimate, My Prepaid Daily Plus, and other selected plans. Virtually all the big streaming names are present: Spotify, Google Play Music, Pandora, and the Gold Coast-based Guvera. It's not strictly limited to music either, as iHeartRadio is also included.

Noticeably absent is Apple Music. According to Gizmodo Australia, this is possibly because Cupertino already has a strong partnership with rival network Telstra.

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Pandora Gets A Spiffy New Interface, Looks Like An App You'll Actually Want To Use Now

Before Google Play Music, YouTube Music, Spotify, Rdio, or any of those other music services, there was Pandora. I've pretty much been using it since the beginning (albeit off and on), and no matter how many other music streaming/discovery services show up, I always keep coming back to it for all my radio needs. I use it as a supplement to Play Music — when I don't know what to listen to, Pandora is always there to hook me up. My thumbs-up library is so vast at this point, it's really difficult to even think about letting go.

The thing is, it's always been kind of…not attractive.

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Pandora Introduces 'Browse' Section Filled With Music You Might Like, Coming Soon To Android

Millions of people already consider Pandora the best way to discover new music. You create a station starting with an artist you like, and the site follows that up with songs sharing similar characteristics. You indicate whether you like or don't like a song, and the station gets smarter from there.

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Pandora Introduces Thumbprint Radio, A Station Based On Every Song You've Given A Thumbs Up

You start with a song. Ten seconds in, you decide that this one isn't your style. You give it a thumbs down, and the track goes away. Another song begins. You love it, and give it a thumbs up. You don't particularly like or dislike the next one, but you give a few of the songs after more approval. Then you create another station, and you start the process again.

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Opera Max Starts Compressing Data On Three More Music Services: YouTube Music, Saavn, And Gaana

Whether you're on a small data plan, in an area with limited internet speeds, or your unlimited data plan has switched you to slow speeds after you ran through your fair use allotment, there's always a need for an app that can compress your transfers and save you time and data while you continue to use your device as usual. Opera Max is that app, it goes through all of your traffic and tries to save as many bytes as possible. And now it's getting even more effective at that.

Last month, Opera Max added music compression on a couple of services: Pandora, Slacker, and SoundCloud.

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Pandora Buys Rdio For $75 Million, Latter Service Will Eventually Shut Down

With the number of online music streaming services floating around, there's seemingly an option out there for any type of music listener. Inevitably some of these services will be similar. Pandora provides Internet radio stations that mold to your tastes. Spotify provides an online library that lets you play what you want on demand.

Rdio lets you listen to radio stations that adapt to your taste. Sound familiar? Pandora apparently thinks so, because the company is now buying Rdio.

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Opera Max Now Compresses Audio From Pandora, SoundCloud, And Slacker

Opera Max isn't a browser. It's an Android utility that works in the background to apply the same data compression you've come to expect from Opera's regular and Mini browsers, except it does it on all of (or most of) your apps without you having to worry about a thing.

A couple of months ago, it added support for video compression from YouTube and Netflix, and now it's tackling another culprit of data consumption: audio. The three apps that Opera Max' compression algorithms will take care of are Pandora, SoundCloud, and Slacker. You won't have to do a thing for this to work.

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[Deal Alert] Get A 6-Month Pandora One Subscription For 20% Off ($24 Instead Of $30)

Does Google Play Music All Access not quench your thirst for music streaming and random audio discoveries? Do you fail to see the appeal behind Spotify's playlists? Then maybe you use Pandora as your audio station and let it curate music just the way you like it... except when you don't and can't skip that horrible tune it just threw in your ears because you've already used your skips for the day.

Your solution is a Pandora One subscription, a $4.99/month subscription that gives you more daily skips and lesser timeouts, while also removing ads. But if $4.99 is too much to pay, or if you're already a Pandora One subscriber and want to save a bit, there's a sweet little deal over on StackSocial that you may be interested in.

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Pandora Announces $0.99 One Day Pass For Ad-Free Streaming, Launches September 10th

Pandora has been around for a decade, and they're celebrating with a new way for you to pay them money. Yay? But really, the new One Day Pass feature might have its uses. This option is enabled by Pandora v6.4 (probably), but there's still a server-side switch that won't be thrown until September 10th.

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Amazon's Echo Voice Controlled Speaker Gains Pandora Support Plus MLB And MLS Scores In The Latest Update

The Amazon Echo, as a sort of physical embodiment of the functionality that voice-controlled services like Google Now offer, is an interesting idea. But without a screen or much in the way of direct input, its utility is limited by the number of services that it ties into. For example, before today the Echo could only access music from iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and Amazon's own cloud music service. The latest software update enables much-needed support for Pandora.

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To use Pandora music with the Echo, open the Echo app on your phone and add your Pandora account details in the Music Services section of the Settings menu.

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