Apple Looking to Buy Exclusive Original Podcasts to Compete With Spotify and Promote Apple TV+

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Apple is working on original podcasts that will be exclusive to the Podcasts app, and is searching for an executive to lead its podcast efforts, reports Bloomberg.


Earlier this year, Bloomberg suggested Apple was developing original podcasts focused on TV shows and movies from its Apple TV+ streaming service, using the podcasts as a way to promote Apple TV+, but it appears Apple is also planning to purchase original content.

Apple will focus on audio spinoffs of existing movies and programs on Apple TV+, but is also seeking to purchase original programs that could potentially be adapted into future TV+ content. Apple is said to be searching for an executive to lead its original podcasting work. The new hire will report to Ben Cave, Apple's head of podcasting.

Apple is also said to have asked some producers working on podcasts to provide versions of their podcasts without advertisements, an effort separate from its work on original content.

Apple Music competitor Spotify has been focusing heavily on podcasts over the course of the last year, aiming to challenge Apple's dominance in the podcasting sphere. Apple's Podcasts app on iPhone, iPad, and Mac have long been the go-to listening choice for Apple customers.

Spotify has been working on original podcast content and has purchased several well-known podcasts. Spotify in February 2019, for example, purchased Gimlet Media, known for podcasts like "Reply All" and "Homecoming." Just this week, Spotify scored exclusive rights to popular podcast "The Joe Rogan Experience," which will see all of the podcasts made available exclusively through Spotify.

According to podcast producers that spoke to Bloomberg, Apple is just "dipping its toe" into original podcast content and has not yet made a massive leap into original podcast content like Spotify.

Article Link: Apple Looking to Buy Exclusive Original Podcasts to Compete With Spotify and Promote Apple TV+
 

sublunar

macrumors 65816
Jun 23, 2007
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Belated but much appreciated move - if Apple keep it up. Podcasts during this weird time, unlike TV shows and films, can continued to be made. They are cheap and easy to produce and audio/video conferencing can give you a televisual product too. Wonder if they'd do some radio dramas as well as the usual documentaries etc. By the time lockdowns are resolved they might have enough of a following to make a TV or movie version.
 
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CWallace

macrumors 604
Aug 17, 2007
7,132
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Seattle, WA
I'm not a fan of having to subscribe to a service to listen to a podcast, even if said service offers free tiers, as I enjoy being able to use only one "portal" (in my case, Overcast) to listen to everything I currently follow.

This goes as much for Apple as it does for Spotify and Luminary.

As an aside, I found Andrew Wilkinson's piece in Medium last September on how signing for an exclusive with Spotify or Luminary (and now, Apple?) could be a way to get "ripped off" interesting.
 
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sublunar

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Jun 23, 2007
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I'm not a fan of having to subscribe to a service to listen to a podcast, even if said service offers free tiers, as I enjoy being able to use only one "portal" (in my case, Overcast) to listen to everything I currently follow.

This goes as much for Apple as it does for Spotify and Luminary.
If it adds value to an Apple Music subscription it might be the difference for some people. The obvious free tier for podcasts would be a feed with baked-in adverts with the ad-free version streaming inside Apple Music for paying subscribers.
 
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MisterK

macrumors 6502
Jan 9, 2006
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I’d prefer podcasts stay open but I don’t see how Apple has much of a choice with Spotify having broken the seal. There’s nothing to stop Spotify from buying up all the top podcasts for exclusives and adding that to the open ones everyone else has. Apple’s hand is forced. Apple podcasts UI is already the worst and now they’re going to have fewer podcasts than their competition.

What I’d love to see is Apple deciding to dominate podcasts. Relaunch the player with a good interface, have Beats2 as a live 24hr talk radio station where they surface the best podcasts, and promote more formats than a couple people talking around a desk. Maybe some radio theatre. Maybe interactive stuff.
 
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macduke

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Jun 27, 2007
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Podcasts were designed to be open across all platforms that can read the feed and play the audio file. Anyone can listen, like radio, and you’re free to put your own ads in the content. I don’t like the direction this is headed, but I do know one thing: I want to start a podcast with a friend. Even outside of these exclusive deals there is a ton of money being made right now and I’m the type of person that can sit and talk about anything for an hour and feel, more often than not, that I have something valuable to add to the conversation—especially as it relates to tech, gaming, photography, science and current events.
 
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Professor Rucy

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Jan 29, 2020
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Welcome to a subscription-based podcast world? It was only a matter of time for companies like Apple to once again monetize content they did not create (books, magaaines, news, music). Podcasts and radio are next. The difference is, we didn’t pay for podcasts before this model rolls out like we did for our music. Whether this plan succeeds, we shall see.
 
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Porco

macrumors 68040
Mar 28, 2005
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IMHO, Apple should compete with this horrid notion of exclusive ‘podcasts’ by supporting the-audio-content-formerly-known-as-podcasts to remain platform agnostic, not by helping yet another fragmentation of content.
 
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Northern Man

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Aug 25, 2013
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Wake up kids. It is a tough and unfair world out there. I don't listen to podcasts and don't care what happens but this is not Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland saying "Hey, lets put on a free show under the big top to save the town", this is business despite a lot of the content being crap.
 
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