Apple today revealed a re-designed Podcast app and Apple Podcast Subscriptions – worldwide podcast marketplace to listeners to sign up to premium podcasts and exclusive content.
Moving forward there will be a subscription service for premium podcasts alongside free shows on Apple Podcasts.
The benefits of Apple Podcast Subscriptions will include ad-free listening, access to additional and exclusive content and early access to new series.
“Fifteen years ago, Apple took podcasts mainstream, offering creators a premier, open platform to inform, entertain, and inspire hundreds of millions of listeners around the world,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services.
“Today, Apple Podcasts is the best place for listeners to discover and enjoy millions of great shows, and we are proud to lead the next chapter of podcasting with Apple Podcasts Subscriptions.
“We’re excited to introduce this powerful new platform to creators around the world, and we can’t wait to hear what they make with it.”
From next month listeners will also be able to discover channels – groups of shows curated by creators with unique titles, descriptions and artwork.
Users will be able to explore free channels to make it easier to find more shows from their favourite creators.
Martina Abrahams Ilunga, CEO and chief editor of You Had Me at Black said: “As an independent show that started five years ago, we’ve always been powered by our community. And our community is hungry for more!
“More stories and more episodes — sooner. Apple Podcasts Subscriptions empowers us to deliver that. With our subscription, listeners can hear new seasons and episodes first, before anyone else, while also supporting our growth and sustainability.”
Donald Albright, president and co-founder of Tenderfoot TV says: “With TenderfootPlus+, we’re able to provide our listening community with even more of what they want — exclusive, early-access, and ad-free listening for our tentpole titles and new shows.
“Launching this subscription on Apple Podcasts, where the large majority of our listeners engages with us each week, makes it easy for the Tenderfoot audience to seamlessly upgrade to the best experience.”
Malcolm Gladwell and Jacob Weisberg, co-founders of Pushkin Industries said: “Podcasting totally changed my approach to storytelling, and Apple Podcasts Subscriptions is a mind shift,” said Gladwell, who also hosts Revisionist History.
“Our producers and I have so many ideas that don’t fit into existing models but will now have an outlet. This is a big step forward in the evolution of the audio content business, and we are excited about it.”
Added Weisberg: “Podcasting exists, and thrives, today because of Apple.
“Apple Podcasts Subscriptions will help us connect more deeply with our listeners and build a healthy business. We strongly believe that paid subscriptions are what independent creators like us need to succeed and thrive over the long term, and we’re thrilled that Apple is taking the lead.”
Apple Podcasts Subscriptions will be available in more than 170 countries and regions in May.
Pricing for podcast subscriptions will be set buy the creators.