Become a MacRumors Supporter for $50/year with no ads, ability to filter front page stories, and private forums.

MacRumors

macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
57,449
20,283


Apple is considering launching a new subscription service that would be focused on podcasts, according to unnamed sources that spoke to The Information. The service would charge people to listen to podcasts.

Apple-Podcast-Alternate.jpg

By creating a paid podcasting service, Apple could potentially lure podcast creators with the promise of more money, stealing them away from other platforms like Spotify, SiriusXM, and Amazon.

Apple has long had a popular Podcasts app and has maintained a podcast distribution service on its Mac and iOS platforms, but Apple has not to date attempted to make money from it.

Over the course of the last couple of years, the podcast market has grown and Apple's rivals like Spotify have been snapping up major podcasting names, leading to consolidation in the industry. As The Information points out, Spotify has spent $800 million buying podcasting companies like Gimlet Media and The Ringer, as well as acquiring the rights to popular podcasts like The Joe Rogan Experience.

In the future, many podcasts may be exclusive to specific platforms and may also come with a subscription fee, and Apple could establish itself as one of the first companies to have a dedicated podcasting service.

Apple has been building out its podcast efforts in recent years. Rumors from Bloomberg have suggested Apple is working on original podcasts that will be exclusive to the podcasts app.

Apple plans to purchase original content and will also create audio spinoffs of existing movies and programs on Apple TV+. In the fall, Apple hired Jake Shapiro, a veteran radio executive, to head up a team working with podcast creators.

According to The Information, talks between Apple and production companies for a podcast service are taking place now, but it continues to be unclear if Apple will follow through and launch the service. If it does launch, it could be bundled with other services like Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Arcade, and Apple News+ as part of the Apple One bundles that the company offers.

The possibility of a paid podcasting service was raised by Loup Ventures analysts earlier this month in a report that suggested Apple could be working on a range of new paid services including Podcasts+, Stocks+, and Mail+.

Update 10:24 a.m.: Bloomberg is corroborating the claim, citing its own sources claiming that Apple "has discussed the plan to create a subscription service with its partners."

Article Link: Apple Developing Podcast Subscription Service to Better Compete With Spotify
 
Last edited:

Michael Scrip

macrumors 604
Mar 4, 2011
7,445
10,980
NC
FFS Does anyone who listens to podcasts want a bloody subscription service for them?
The subscription-based business model is getting out of hand.
Yet another subscription... don’t know whether Apple could get away with charging for Apple Music and Podcasts when Spotify does both for one price. Maybe Apple One bundle could compete with Spotify’s price.

I'm gonna create an app to keep track of all your subscriptions.

Plot twist... it has a subscription!

:p
 

applicious84

macrumors 6502
Sep 1, 2020
447
864
I wonder if the Apple Music App will keep opening randomly and asking for you to set it up. It's so annoying. Is there a way to make it stop? Hmm, I haven't tried uninstalling it. That will be my next step!

Also, with their money, it's kind of crazy to be trying to take over the content world too. How many jars can they be pulling from?
 
  • Like
Reactions: GeoStructural

MecPro

macrumors 6502a
Mar 6, 2009
567
381
London
Whilst I don’t like ads, I’ll listen to them. But I’m in the U.K. and most of my podcasts are US based, so I don’t really buy anything from them.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Dandoodle

Art Mark

macrumors 6502
Jan 6, 2010
435
901
Oregon
It’s an interesting issue. Apple definitely dropped the ball. They were busy investing huge sums in TV and movies and missed the boat that Podcasts did become a ‘thing’. I do not subscribe to any pay Podcast services. I don’t think I would. But IF one aggregator can rope up a lot of great ones, perhaps. But no matter what Apple does need to invest in the platform because Podcasts do inspire pop culture and have pretty big media tails. I think if Apple had been more aggressive with the platform early on they would have benefited from that investment. When it started it was an embarrassing platform for the most part. Now it’s seen as a legit platform for certain kinds of entertainment especially to enhance material already published, or on TV etc.
 

Michael Scrip

macrumors 604
Mar 4, 2011
7,445
10,980
NC
Gonna be a no from me, dawg. Super tired of subscription services, and I still subscribe to PLENTY of them. I'm fine with my free, normal podcast fare on Overcast, not paying for subscription podcasts too.

Same.

I listen to a ton of podcasts on Overcast... and I can't imagine any of my favorites will be hidden behind a paywall. And if they are... I'll just find some others.

I pay for a lot of things... but podcasts ain't one.

I'm only an occasional listener to Joe Rogan... and even his are still free. You just have to use the Spotify app for his.
 

Flight Plan

macrumors 6502a
May 26, 2014
707
623
Southeastern US
I'm a podcast addict.

But I'm also allergic to subscriptions; almost as much as I'm allergic to advertisements that insult my intelligence. If you repeat your phone number more than once in your ad appearing on podcasts, I'll fast forward your ass.

Seriously, I hear adverts on podcasts and on iHeart radio shows where they say the damned number like 4-5 times really fast; as if they think millions of us are scrambling trying to find a pen. No, I'm scrambling trying to find either the "forward 30 seconds" button or just to change to a different podcast or station.
 
  • Like
Reactions: tonyr6 and R88D

Geepaw

macrumors regular
Jan 15, 2021
133
190
If it's cheap enough and the content is good, people will pay. I pay Sirius XM about $5 per month. It's worth it if you use it.
 

CWallace

macrumors G4
Aug 17, 2007
10,513
8,059
Seattle, WA
FFS Does anyone who listens to podcasts want a bloody subscription service for them?

Do they want it? No.

Will they pay for it? Enough do to make it worth multiple company's while to engage in it.

Yet another subscription ... don’t know whether Apple could get away with charging for Apple Music and Podcasts when Spotify does both for one price. Maybe Apple One bundle could compete with Spotify’s price.

I think it could be folded into Apple Music to improve the appeal of that service, though I could also see it being offered as an a la carte service and as part of an Apple One bundle.

Paying to listen to podcasts kind of goes against the appeal of podcasts. If they go this route at least make a free version that's automatically ad supported.

Even for podcasts that were making significant money from advertising, they evidently felt it was better to go with a "guaranteed pay-out" (Rogan, Stern, etc.) and put themselves behind a subscription paywall.
 

7thson

macrumors demi-god
May 13, 2012
1,285
1,182
Six Rivers, CA
If they don’t bundle it with Music then I don’t see how they could charge more than a buck or two for it. While podcasts have gained traction enormously in the last few years, its largely due to the fact that they are free. I don’t mind listening to a few ads, throwing some $ at a creators patreon account or even paying $10/year for Oveecast because I do want creators to benefit from their efforts. Not a fan of exclusivity and just find myself losing interest in those that are heading that way.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ohio.emt

nburwell

macrumors 603
May 6, 2008
5,183
2,088
DE
Yes! Another subscription service! /sarcasm

In all seriousness though, we don't need a subscription podcast service. I know podcast makers will be drawn to this for the opportunity to make more money. But the last thing I want is to have podcasts fragmented where I'll need a subscription to Apple and Spotify to listen ABC or XYZ podcasts.
 

4jasontv

Suspended
Jul 31, 2011
6,272
7,523
I would pay for a subscription for only one reason: to support content creators. If it acts like patreon and my subscription is distributed among the content I consume than I would be happy to pay. I already use patreon, but I am getting to the point where I am funding so many creators it's becoming difficult to manage. Having one charge that can dynamically supports creators would be nice.

I would like a way to encourage and support high quality single episode podcasts. I bet there are some really great story tellers who could spend 3 to 9 months crafting one podcast who simply can't build an audience with that upload cycle.
 
  • Like
Reactions: amartinez1660

Flight Plan

macrumors 6502a
May 26, 2014
707
623
Southeastern US
Sirius/XM keeps trying to get money out of me because I have a car with it built-in. But you know what I listened to most of the time during my 3-month trial? The music app, Podcast app, iHeartradio, and Amazon Music. All from my iPhone and none of them under subscription. I actually used Sirius/XM for about 2 hours during the whole 90 days.

That's not even worth $5 or me (or $15 per quarter).
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.