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Apple has held talks with podcast network Wondery about a potential acquisition, reports Bloomberg. Wondery is responsible for popular podcasts that include "Dirty John" and "Dr. Death," among others.

Apple-Podcast-Alternate.jpg

Wondery is looking for $300 to $400 million and has also held talks with Sony Music Entertainment and other companies, though Spotify is said to be "out of the running." At that price point, Bloomberg says that it would mark one of the largest deals in the podcasting market.

A deal is expected to be established in the coming months, but it's not yet clear if Apple will go through with the purchase as things are still in the discussion stage. Wondery has a monthly audience of more than eight million people, which would be a major score for Apple as it aims to ramp up its podcasting efforts.

A Wondery purchase would provide Apple with a library of original content along with a source for ideas that could eventually be turned into television shows. Wondery is already working on TV shows based on podcasts, including a WeWork series that's going to premiere on Apple TV+.

Rumors this year have suggested Apple is looking to buy exclusive original podcasts to better compete with Spotify's podcast offerings. Apple has specifically been seeking podcasts that could eventually be adapted into future TV+ content, and it plans to create podcasts that will augment its TV shows.

Apple competitor Spotify has been focusing heavily on podcasts and has purchased Gimlet Media, known for podcasts like "Reply All" and "Homecoming." Apple has long been a leader in the podcasting sphere thanks to the Podcasts app, which it has been improving in recent years, but Spotify has been making inroads in podcasting.

Apple has already purchased a couple of podcasting companies. In 2017, it bought Pop Up Archive to improve search, and in early 2020, it bought podcasting service Scout FM, designed to turn podcast shows into radio-style stations.

Article Link: Apple Held Acquisition Talks With Podcast Network Wondery
 

Abazigal

Contributor
Jul 18, 2011
15,282
14,606
Singapore
Well, if Apple wants to continue to expand their services repertoire, podcasts and iBooks look like the next logical extension.

I don’t blame Apple though. Companies like Spotify started the whole subscription trend with podcasts, and Apple possibly feels compelled to respond in order to protect its market share.
 

mattriff

macrumors newbie
May 25, 2005
10
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Wondery makes great true-crime podcasts. I actually pay for Wondery+ to support them. I'd much rather see them with Apple than Spotify or SiriusXM (who has also been buying stuff up). I fear the Netflix-ization of podcasting, but models where you can listen for free with ads or as part of a subscription without aren't bad.
 
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alayal

macrumors member
Dec 8, 2015
71
119
I think Apple can do this because of the big pockets but the main focus should be on hardware, software and R&D which is are their core values.
It really bugs me they quit the Airport lineup while they expend billions in media content.
 

xxray

macrumors 68000
Jul 27, 2013
1,812
4,199
Is this the one time that competition isn’t good for the consumer? Podcasts were supposed to be free, cross-platform, easily accessible. Now, I’m going to have to keep switching apps depending on which app the podcast is located due to Apple and Spotify competing for ownership.

Sigh, I wish Spotify never started this.
 

Apple_Robert

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Sep 21, 2012
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In the middle of several books.
Wondery makes great true-crime podcasts. I actually pay for Wondery+ to support them. I'd much rather see them with Apple than Spotify or SiriusXM (who has also been buying stuff up). I fear the Netflix-ization of podcasting, but models where you can listen for free with ads or as part of a subscription without aren't bad.
I am glad I came across this news story. I had never heard of Wondery before and I like true crime stories. I will definitely check it out.

edited to add: I see they don’t offer SIWA, which is disappointing.
 
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MisterK

macrumors 6502
Jan 9, 2006
472
284
Ottawa, Canada
I used to listen to the Business Wars podcast by Wondery. Each set of 4-5 episodes would focus on the history/dynamic of two competing companies in any given space. Marvel vs. DC, Nike vs. Adidas, Apple vs. Microsoft, McDonald's vs. Burger King, etc.

I really appreciated the more produced and polished format over podcasting's usual 2-5 dudes talking. I LOVE when podcasting does something different than that. More radio dramas and scripted shows and tightly produced radio documentaries please!

I also think that Apple's radio stations (AppleMusic 1, AppleMusic Hits, and AppleMusic Country) could use the addition of AppleTalk where they stream the best talk radio (podcasts) around the clock.
 

foobarbaz

macrumors 6502a
Nov 29, 2007
655
1,010
So, I guess we'll see Podcasts+?

Fine by me, especially if it's part of Apple One. I'm kinda sick of hearing about mattresses, suitcases and hosting. :)
And they could certainly do worse than Wondery …
 

Apple_Robert

macrumors Penryn
Sep 21, 2012
28,904
36,905
In the middle of several books.
I used to listen to the Business Wars podcast by Wondery. Each set of 4-5 episodes would focus on the history/dynamic of two competing companies in any given space. Marvel vs. DC, Nike vs. Adidas, Apple vs. Microsoft, McDonald's vs. Burger King, etc.

I really appreciated the more produced and polished format over podcasting's usual 2-5 dudes talking. I LOVE when podcasting does something different than that. More radio dramas and scripted shows and tightly produced radio documentaries please!

I also think that Apple's radio stations (AppleMusic 1, AppleMusic Hits, and AppleMusic Country) could use the addition of AppleTalk where they stream the best talk radio (podcasts) around the clock.
That is a good idea about AppleTalk. I like good talk radio.
 
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satchmo

macrumors 68040
Aug 6, 2008
3,826
3,997
Canada
Is this the one time that competition isn’t good for the consumer? Podcasts were supposed to be free, cross-platform, easily accessible. Now, I’m going to have to keep switching apps depending on which app the podcast is located due to Apple and Spotify competing for ownership.

Sigh, I wish Spotify never started this.

While I love free, it’s not realistic for the time and resources people put into making content.

In the early days, it was simply a few people chatting about their interests.
Then Serial happened and production values raised the bar.

And like everything else, ad money came calling. The subscription model is simply more advertising wrapped differently.
 

q64ceo

macrumors 6502
Aug 13, 2010
407
472
Please, no. Wondery has excellent podcasts. I don't want to see them having to edit their future content to make it more Apple corporate friendly.
 
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MacBH928

macrumors 604
May 17, 2008
6,584
2,737
I think Apple can do this because of the big pockets but the main focus should be on hardware, software and R&D which is are their core values.
It really bugs me they quit the Airport lineup while they expend billions in media content.

Apple seems to believe they have reached market saturation in that area, while I still believe there is too much room to expand on the Mac as they are only 10-15% market share. Now they look else where to draw even more money.

Wondery makes great true-crime podcasts. I actually pay for Wondery+ to support them. I'd much rather see them with Apple than Spotify or SiriusXM (who has also been buying stuff up). I fear the Netflix-ization of podcasting, but models where you can listen for free with ads or as part of a subscription without aren't bad.

Is this the one time that competition isn’t good for the consumer? Podcasts were supposed to be free, cross-platform, easily accessible. Now, I’m going to have to keep switching apps depending on which app the podcast is located due to Apple and Spotify competing for ownership.

Sigh, I wish Spotify never started this.

Once publishers lock up, create a firewall, use DRM, and make it difficult to access content...the ships on the pirate bay will sail again. Netflix worked because its convenient and cheap, all the shows, all devices, no limits, no competitors, $10 a month.
 

Ntombi

macrumors 68040
Jul 1, 2008
3,533
1,321
Bostonian exiled in SoCal
I used to listen to the Business Wars podcast by Wondery. Each set of 4-5 episodes would focus on the history/dynamic of two competing companies in any given space. Marvel vs. DC, Nike vs. Adidas, Apple vs. Microsoft, McDonald's vs. Burger King, etc.

I really appreciated the more produced and polished format over podcasting's usual 2-5 dudes talking. I LOVE when podcasting does something different than that. More radio dramas and scripted shows and tightly produced radio documentaries please!

I also think that Apple's radio stations (AppleMusic 1, AppleMusic Hits, and AppleMusic Country) could use the addition of AppleTalk where they stream the best talk radio (podcasts) around the clock.
Business Wars is really good, and I really enjoy American Scandal (similar format, but for large-scale scandals, like the Enron and the Volkswagen diesel scandal), and American History Tellers (covers things like Prohibition and how we got to the current two-party system). I’m not hugely into true crime, so I haven’t listened to those, though I know they churn them out really quickly.

I liked Bonga Bonga too, because I didn’t know more than the broad strokes of the Silvio Berlusconi story.
 
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