The podcast industry is becoming bigger and bigger as companies like Apple, SiriusXM, Amazon, and Spotify are acutely aware of its potential. In the last few years, they’ve gone above and beyond to grab a larger market share of this upcoming industry.
The top players in the podcast industry had spent hundreds of millions on acquiring podcast companies, attracting popular creators, and developing their platforms. For example, Spotify dropped over $800 million on acquisitions and licensing exclusive rights to popular shows such as The Joe Rogan Experience. Then there is Amazon that acquired Wondery, whereas SiriusXM purchased Stitcher in 2020.
Besides the mentioned top players in the podcasting industry, some promising and ambitious startups such as Luminary exist. Luminary has already introduced a podcasting subscription service. Plus, Luminary has been substantially backed by angel investors and VC firms that brought well over $100 million to its table.
In light of all that, Apple doesn’t want to be left in the dust
The tech giant is already making new moves that would see them positioned as high as possible in an industry that they helped launched two decades ago with the iPod’s launch.
Two years ago, Apple started negotiating with production companies to begin creating exclusive podcasts for their app. There are even some rumors that Apple was also bidding for Wondery, which Amazon purchased eventually. Last year, Apple launched its first international podcasts featuring Zane Lowe, hosted by Apple Music Radio. Then just last fall, Apple hired Jack Shapiro, a veteran public radio executive, to spearhead a team that will work closely with podcast creators.
It seems that Apple is determined to make its boldest move so far. The Cupertino-based tech giant plans to start charging people to listen to podcasts. Apple decided to stay silent on the matter and declined to comment officially. However, the news source is “people familiar with the matter.”
By charging people for individual podcasts, Apple wants to do something that no other podcast service does. Apple wants to give podcast creators more ways to make money. With that, Apple wants to draw as many podcast creators as possible to its platform.
Experts believe that it is only a matter of time before big companies start charging a subscription fee for their podcasts. Many experts believe that all the big players in the podcast industry only focus on bringing exclusive content to their platforms. By adding a subscription fee for some of its podcasts, it appears that Apple wants to take everyone by surprise and be the first of the big players that will do so.
That said, even Spotify seems to be toying with the idea of charging for podcasts.