Podcasts, in case you hadn’t noticed, are hot. Not only are exciting new podcasts launching seemingly every day, but the distribution channels are shifting too.
Today, Google announced it is bringing podcasts onto its streaming music platform, Google Play Music, putting audio shows the same player you use to jam out to tunes. But the real benefit Google is bringing to the space is discoverability.
“Similar to our contextual playlists for music, we want to make it easy to find the right podcast—whether you’re a podcast aficionado or listening for the first time,” Google Play Music product manager Ilia Malkovitch said in a blog post.
The new podcasts area has sections like “Learning Something New” and “Laughing Out Loud” so users can find new podcasts depending on their mood. Many of the suggested podcasts may be obvious choices for veteran listeners, but the organization and subsections like “Culture Trivia Hour” and “Brainy and Offbeat Comedy” make it easy to maintain long listening sessions with similar shows.
Google isn’t the first streaming service to jump on the podcast bandwagon, but it’s coming at it through a more traditional route than Audible. The Amazon-owned audiobook provider is currently testing original podcast-like content for subscribers. Google’s approach, however, is closer to Spotify, which announced podcast support almost a year ago.
Not every podcast is available through Google Play Music, but the selection has increased from the initial tests and include pretty much all of the most popular podcast networks. One notable exception appears to be This American Life, along with spinoff Serial, the show that started the latest podcast firestorm. Indie podcasts who want to get their shows onto the streaming platform can submit them here.
The new podcast section is rolling out to Google Play Music users in the U.S. and Canada today. It is initially available on the web and on Android.
Source: Geekwire Google