Pandora Boxed In: Fixing an Internet Radio Service Disruption

Jan 4

Written by: Todd Anthony Puma
1/4/2013 1:24 PM  RssIcon

Every custom integration business owner wants to start their day off strong, anticipating all the good things and big sales to come. You listen to your favorite song in the car on the ride into the office, whistling the tune as you sit behind your desk and hit the “play” button on your voice mail. Then your great day is stopped dead in its tracks as you hear message after message from angry clients who can’t play music through the system you installed. You spend half your day on the phone troubleshooting and the other half running to as many of their homes and businesses as you can to try to fix these problems. It’s not until late that night when you finally receive an email informing you that Pandora had performed an update that many receiver manufacturers could not support.

When Pandora’s most recent update went into effect, some manufacturers were on top of it, coming up with a solution (even if it was just a temporary Band-Aid), while many others are STILL looking for a solution.

Many AV receivers are now designed with integrated internet radio services built in, but unfortunately not every manufacturer can support the firmware updates that come along later. Because it’s not “theirs” to own, AVR manufacturers can’t always predict what direction a music service will take. In efforts to take responsibility and “own” the network as much as possible, I now assign IP addresses to each individual device or source so there is less margin for error should the system go down, or should updates need to be performed.

Because that solution could not help my clients struggling with the latest Pandora update, I suggested it be best to use on a hard-wired, stable connection like an iPod doc or CD player instead. Yes, this would be a step back, but it’s a good solution until we are able to test internet radio features and find that they are fully functional. This idea worked fine for my residential clients because they play music more for pleasure. However, it was not an acceptable option for my commercial clients.

My commercial clients either stopped downloading music because they used Pandora or their music was stored on their phones, which they could not afford to have plugged into the system all day. In these scenarios I recommended using Apple TV in place of Pandora. The iCloud allows for music to stream to the system wirelessly and is a totally different kind of animal than Pandora or Rhapsody with less chance of disconnect—although there is still a possibility of the network choking due to an over-crowded streaming platform.

Cutting-edge technology is a huge part of our business and for the most part, it can be very exciting. It is the essence of our industry. Situations like this, on the other hand, can be detrimental to our success. When a system goes down because of a Pandora update, clients won’t know at first if the issue is from an outside source or an update that wasn’t performed properly. They might automatically think there is something wrong with the system that we installed (same as when we get the blame when the cable goes out.) If they do see that there is an update available, many of them are either not confident enough to perform it themselves or won’t know how to go about it.
 
A lot of the time, updates can be a way to increase revenue and get you back into a client’s home or place of business. In this case, however, I found that I did not feel right charging them for a visit that was out of their control (and mine, for that matter.) I actually found that this issue ended up costing me money to keep my clients happy; I purchased Rhapsody accounts or Apple TVs for them to use in the interim while the Pandora issues are worked out.
 
I still believe that internet radio is the way to go, but at this point, is not the most stable solution for those who rely heavily on music. Through some trial and error, I have found that instituting service agreements with certain clients can help me to be more proactive and avoid problems like this. I visit my clients’ homes on a quarterly basis, perform the necessary updates, and test the equipment thoroughly before the updates throw a wrench into my entire system. This way I have minimized my service calls, increased my revenue and continue to maintain a great relationship with my clients.

 
Todd Anthony Puma is president of The Source Home Theater Installation in New York City. 
 
 
 
 

Tags:
Categories:

Your name:
Gravatar Preview
Your email:
(Optional) Email used only to show Gravatar.
Your website:
Title:
Comment:
Security Code
CAPTCHA image
Enter the code shown above in the box below
Add Comment   Cancel 

 

Archive
<September 2014>
SunMonTueWedThuFriSat
31123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
2829301234
567891011
Monthly
September, 2014 (17)
August, 2014 (13)
July, 2014 (15)
June, 2014 (12)
May, 2014 (12)
April, 2014 (14)
March, 2014 (15)
February, 2014 (14)
January, 2014 (24)
December, 2013 (11)
November, 2013 (12)
October, 2013 (15)
September, 2013 (19)
August, 2013 (18)
July, 2013 (19)
June, 2013 (12)
May, 2013 (18)
April, 2013 (17)
March, 2013 (13)
February, 2013 (16)
January, 2013 (26)
December, 2012 (9)
November, 2012 (11)
October, 2012 (16)
September, 2012 (11)
August, 2012 (15)
July, 2012 (13)
June, 2012 (8)
May, 2012 (9)
April, 2012 (10)
March, 2012 (7)
February, 2012 (11)
January, 2012 (14)
December, 2011 (5)
November, 2011 (12)
October, 2011 (8)
September, 2011 (4)
August, 2011 (7)
July, 2011 (11)
June, 2011 (12)
May, 2011 (8)
April, 2011 (6)
March, 2011 (9)
February, 2011 (10)
January, 2011 (9)
December, 2010 (4)
November, 2010 (7)
October, 2010 (4)
September, 2010 (9)
August, 2010 (7)
July, 2010 (8)
June, 2010 (12)
May, 2010 (6)
April, 2010 (8)
March, 2010 (10)
February, 2010 (11)
January, 2010 (1)
December, 2009 (6)
November, 2009 (6)
October, 2009 (11)
September, 2009 (6)
August, 2009 (4)
July, 2009 (4)
June, 2009 (5)
May, 2009 (7)
April, 2009 (9)
March, 2009 (7)
February, 2009 (9)
January, 2009 (8)
December, 2008 (9)
November, 2008 (6)
October, 2008 (7)
September, 2008 (7)
August, 2008 (3)
July, 2008 (5)
May, 2008 (1)
April, 2008 (4)
March, 2008 (3)
February, 2008 (5)
January, 2008 (2)
November, 2007 (1)
October, 2007 (4)
September, 2007 (2)
August, 2007 (3)
July, 2007 (4)
June, 2007 (6)
May, 2007 (6)
April, 2007 (4)
March, 2007 (4)

 

Skip Navigation Links.
Skip Navigation Links.
download

Setting Up Small and Mid-Size Home Automation in No Time
Read More»
By Todd Anthony Puma

URC Developing Sonos Driver After Extra Vegetables Snub
Read More»
By Jeremy J. Glowacki

CEDIA 2014: All of the Lights
Read More»
By Matt D. Scott

Dolby Atmos Audio Surrounds CEDIA 2014
Read More»
By John Sciacca

The Magic Grey Area: Light Commercial
Read More»
By Heather L. Sidorowicz


CEDIA Awards Ceremony 2012
Wisdom Audio Factory Tour
Unexpected Atlanta
Triad DesignerSeries Step-by-Step Install
Top 10 Things to See at CEDIA 2010

+ All Slide Shows
radar fifa 15 android coins evading stealth fighters for
Read More»
will be held at the cheapest FIFA 15 coins
Read More»
circuit would attract fifa 15 coins ps4 enough fans to succeed
Read More»
Moolathanathar Peruman adigal, fifa 15 android coins Thirunalakundramudaiya
Read More»
We aim to offer you competitive pricing fifa 15 android coins
Read More»
Fifa 14 Coins advancing checks as able-bodied
Read More»
completely selling rs gold for six many deserve your trust
Read More»
Without doubt the FIFA 15 shall be released on Sept
Read More»
Fifa 15 posesses a insightful cute touches and intricate
Read More»
it away but keeping it inside best Sergio Ramos manner
Read More»