Slacker Radio unveiled an expansion of its service offering, after raising $3 million in debt funding earlier this year. In addition to its free, ad-supported radio and $3.99/month Slacker Radio Plus services, it now also includes Slacker Radio Premium for $9.99 per month. This new service provides all the same features of the other two, but adds full control over Slacker’s library of music; offers ad-free listening, unlimited song skips (free listeners to Slacker’s channels are limited to 6 song skips per hour, per station), news radio, complete lyrics and the ability to store stations and playlists on their mobile phone.
Slacker Premium Radio adds a third tier Slacker’s service options: free radio, paid radio and on-demand. The addition puts the service in competition with MOG, Rdio, Spotify and other subscription services that offer that option already.
It also lets users listen to any artist, album, playlist, or genre at any time, create radio stations containing a single artist, and listen to albums from start to finish, and create detailed playlists — all of which can be cached on mobile devices for offline use.
Subscribing to Slacker Radio Plus also removes all of the audio and banner ads, rewarding listeners with a music-only experience. Listeners get ad-free listening on the web, on their mobile phone and anywhere else they sign in to listen to.
Free listeners are only able to view partial lyrics for available songs, with Slacker Radio Plus they get the full lyrics.
Premium Radio gives full control of a Slacker music library featuring millions of songs–any song at any time. Users can listen to radio stations made entirely of one artist, and you can listen to whole albums in track order.
Slacker Premium Radio also allows custom playlists with all of a user’s favorite songs. They can set the exact order of the songs and edit your playlist at any time.
RBR-TVBR observation: Slacker is certainly trying to best Pandora, which currently does not have on-demand song access. With Pandora, you can choose a song from their library, but it may not play for a while, or at all. The other thing is Pandora has now limited free listening to 40 hours per month.