Spotify has made inroads into the podcasting market in recent years, increasing its original podcast offerings and making major acquisitions such as Gimlet Media, Parcast and Anchor, as well as key deals such as rights to the popular. Joe Rogan Experience Podcast.
Spotify’s efforts could pay off, according to a new forecast shared by eMarketer today (via TechCrunch) which predicts that Spotify may soon have more podcast listeners than Apple.
According to eMarketer’s estimates, 28.2 million people will listen to podcasts on Spotify at least once a month, while 28 million people will listen to them through Apple podcasts. Although Apple has also made efforts to improve its podcast offerings, Apple Podcasts has lost its listener share.
In 2018, Apple podcasts made up 34% of podcast listeners, a metric that will drop to 23.8 in 2021. Spotify’s rise in popularity can be attributed to Apple’s inability to match the pace of investment and development. Spotify’s innovation in the podcasting space, according to eMarketer analyst Peter Vahle.
“By bringing podcasts and music together in one place, Spotify has quickly become the convenient one-stop-shop for all things digital audio,” said Peter Vahle, eMarketer forecast analyst at Insider Intelligence. “Apple has long been the de facto destination for podcasting, but in recent years it has not kept pace with Spotify’s investment and innovation in podcast content and technology. Spotify’s investments have empowered creators and advertisers of podcasts through its proprietary hosting, creation and monetization tools. “
Apple is working to counter Spotify’s deep investments in podcasting with its own original content. Apple recently launched the first podcast based on “For All Mankind,” one of its Apple TV + shows, and more TV-related content is expected to come out.
Rumors suggest that Apple is also working on purchasing original podcasts exclusive to the Podcasts app, with those original podcasts possibly serving as inspiration for future TV content as well.
Since November, Apple has allowed the integration of Apple podcasts on the web to increase visibility, and in January, Apple launched a new Podcast Spotlight feature to highlight burgeoning podcast makers. Apple is also said to be working on a podcast subscription service to better enable it to compete with Spotify by luring in content creators with the promise of more money.
It should be noted that eMarketer’s analysis is based on an estimate of podcast listeners and no hard data is available from Apple on how many people in the United States listen to podcasts.