Just in time for the launch of Apple’s iTunes Radio streaming service in Sept., Pandora on Wednesday announced the company will lift the 40 hours per month limit instilled against mobile devices earlier this year. The company’s CFO, Mike Herring, said the company will reset its levers on Sept. 1 in order to “maximize free listening for everyone.” Without directly addressing the impending competition from Apple, it seems like Pandora is clearly concerned by iTunes Radio, especially since it’s baked into iOS 7, which is set to launch this fall.
Pandora claims the limit was initially implemented because of mounting royalty costs, but improved advertising revenue is allowing the company to cover those increased costs. A press release from the company said the limit affected just four percent of Pandora users, but it seems like that small percentage was enough to warrant a policy reversal. This reversal is actually reminiscent of a similar change Pandora made in 2011, though that 40-hour limit was capped on desktop users.