Apple is maneuvering to challenge its biggest competitor in podcasting and music streaming, Spotify. To date, Apple’s subscription rates are behind Spotify’s. However, Apple executives say their new plan to overcome the gap, could bear fruit, according to Bloomberg.
In an article published to Bloomberg, Lucas Shaw and Mark Gurman write, “Apple executives reached out to media companies to discuss buying exclusive rights to podcasts. Apple has not yet outlined a clear-cut strategy, but claims it plans to pursue the sorts of deals it has traditionally passed up.”
Industry insiders speculate that by investing more in the podcasting arena, Apple can generate more interest in its products and services and if things go as planned, to hold on to this new projected demographic.
Apple is well known as the originator of this wildly popular form of entertainment. But over the last 10 to 15 years, services like YouTube and the many streaming services have made extraordinary gains in this area- making the term “podcast” synonymous with long-form audio content. Even still, Apple’s Podcast App still transmits approximately 60% of all podcasts.
When Apple made the announcement, Spotify’s market value dropped precipitously by nearly 3% to $150.08 a share. Before the announcement, Spotify’s stock had been up 36%. What this illustrates, perhaps more than anything else, is the incredible confidence speculators have in the ability of Apple to follow through with its promises.
Apple has not made any significant changes to its podcasting assets since it became stable in 2007. Changes to the service are expected to revolve around upgrades to the app- allowing users to stream higher quality material- and to devices optimized for the upgrades.
The new devices are expected to be more powerful with larger screens and more robust sound systems as an emphasis on more and higher quality material are expected. The coming roll-out of 5G can be expected to support the changes as higher data exchange rate capabilities will be necessary to support ultra-high-definition live streaming.
These points are speculation, of course. But they are based on the needs of technology and typical trends. Clues on coming developments are going to be a hot commodity for tech vendors until the final veil is lifted. When asked about possible developments, Apple representatives declined to comment.