This is an interesting article… Do you think Spotify can take over this market? For those of you who listen to a lot of podcasts, can you see yourself moving to Spotify for this?
I am too in love with PocketCasts to ever make the jump. But I think they are uniquely positioned with their shear reach to make a big dent in the area if they play their cards well.
I can’t see this attracting anyone who doesn’t already use Spotify for music, to be honest.
Unless they offered features like being able to search transcriptions, I can’t imagine what would draw an audience in. It will keep existing users though, if all your subscriptions are in their app, and it looks great for their investors when they report on the number of minutes each user listens to audio from their app, especially given none of these minutes are costing them anything, unlike music streaming.
I’m sure a big part of the move is them producing original content and selling ads and licensing deals, Gimlet is making a fortune from selling their podcasts to TV networks. And having all the data about what podcasts their users listen to, who skips ads, what ads perform well mid-roll compared to pre-roll etc is all super valuable.
I’d find it very concerning if a single company starts to control access to podcasts. One of the great things about podcasting is that essentially anyone can do it and anyone can listen. There will always be some podcasts that are exclusive to certain platforms, but as long as no one platform has most of the listeners, these will be a minority.
I think there will be value in Spotify’s recommendations, and there will be a portion of people that will pay for the ease and utility of listening through Spotify. But I don’t think it will be a majority, given that there is so much available for free. And I think that will ultimately be a force that discourages exclusives, as significantly limiting the audience is not going to be in creators’ interests. I can see exclusive windows working better to be honest (as with Jon Ronson’s The Butterfly Effect on Audible).
I think that even monetarily, the push will be for a wider audience with ads, which might simply reinforce Spotify’s current practice of free with ads or subscription with no ads. Time will tell, I guess!