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Friday, February 23, 2024

Apple and Spotify have revealed their prime podcasts of 2023. Here’s what they do — and don’t — inform us.

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That is Sizzling PodThe Verge’s e-newsletter about podcasting and the audio business. Join here for extra.

It’s that point of 12 months once more, when all your mates share their Spotify Wrapped and also you (learn: me) reply together with your boring Apple Music Replay and no one cares. I do even have Spotify, however my Wrapped isn’t loading, perhaps as a result of it has been crashing from overuse. I did obtain a tip from acclaimed author Olivia Wolfgang-Smith that if Taylor Swift is your primary artist on Spotify “they present you slightly video of her saying thanks for being a simp.”

Nevertheless it’s not simply concerning the music! The tip-of-year streaming roundups additionally give us a glimpse into folks’s podcast consumption habits. Let’s get into it.

Spotify’s and Apple’s prime podcasts are…

Spotify and Apple launched their prime podcast lists, they usually have many (although not all) of the standard suspects. And whereas they offer us invaluable perception into which reveals are performing nicely, neither are definitive. Apple and Spotify have totally different audiences and totally different methods, and their respective rankings are a mirrored image of these distinctions.

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  1. Crime Junkie
  2. The Every day
  3. Dateline NBC
  4. SmartLess
  5. This American Life
  6. Morbid
  7. Up First
  8. Huberman Lab
  9. Hidden Mind
  10. Stuff You Ought to Know

And Spotify’s prime 10 embody:

  1. The Joe Rogan Expertise
  2. Name Her Daddy
  3. Huberman Lab
  4. something goes with emma chamberlain
  5. On Goal with Jay Shetty
  6. Crime Junkie
  7. This Previous Weekend w/ Theo Von
  8. Serial Killers
  9. The Diary Of A CEO with Steven Bartlett
  10. TED Talks Every day

As you possibly can see, there’s surprisingly little overlap between the 2 lists. Solely Crime Junkie and Huberman Lab seem on each. And whereas Apple has numerous true crime, information, and {old} podcast standbys, Spotify’s record is stronger on celeb chat reveals (significantly its personal).

Based on a study by Cumulus and Signal Hill, Apple’s podcast listeners are usually older than Spotify’s (median age of listeners is 41 vs. 37, respectively). And whereas Spotify has a good break up when it comes to gender, 61 % of Apple Podcast customers are feminine. Moreover, longtime podcast listeners favor Apple to Spotify.

You’ll be able to see how these demographics play out within the outcomes. True crime is largely pushed by girls listeners, which contributes to the excessive rankings of Crime Junkie, Dateline NBC, and Morbid on Apple. Podcast stalwarts like This American Life and Stuff You Ought to Know additionally did nicely on Apple, probably as a result of the app’s customers have been consuming podcasts for some time. 

On Spotify, you see its younger viewers at play. Alex Cooper, Emma Chamberlain, and Theo Von all clocked prime spots. It’s not the place you go to hearken to NPR — not solely are there no NPR reveals within the prime 10, there are solely two (shorty reveals Up First and NPR Information Now) at present in Spotify’s top 100. For higher or worse, it speaks to Spotify’s new podcast technique that leans closely on celeb chat reveals.

You additionally see on Spotify’s record a bias towards its personal content material. 4 of the highest ten reveals are Spotify originals. That is barely much less egregious than last year when the streamer’s end-of-year record consisted of solely 5 reveals, 4 of which had been Spotify’s. However even then, that was kind of defined by the truth that as a result of Spotify’s reveals had been unique to the platform, the streams of these podcasts had been concentrated in a single place. That modified this 12 months, with Spotify backing away from the exclusivity mannequin and making lots of its podcasts huge, together with top-ten rankees something goes and Serial Killers. It’s doable that components like in-platform advertising of these reveals and residual listener habits performed a task in elevating these reveals.

There’s nonetheless no record that may say with any certitude the precise rating of all podcasts throughout all platforms, however I’ve discovered Edison’s quarterly research (which is predicated on polling, somewhat than uncooked obtain knowledge) to be probably the most constant. In its third quarter report, Edison confirmed that Rogan is primary and, reinforcing Apple’s knowledge, put Crime Junkie at quantity two. However something goes clocked in at quantity 45, and Serial Killers didn’t make the highest 50. And regardless of the attain of conservative discuss pods like The Ben Shapiro Present and The Dan Bongino Present, none of them seem on both record (though Cumulus Podcast Community, which distributes each, was in Apple’s top ten free channels). Maybe, although, that listening is occurring on YouTube or on Every day Wire’s personal app, which is ranked eleventh for the information class within the App Retailer.

This isn’t to say Spotify’s or Apple’s rankings are fallacious. However due to the particularities of those lists, it’s best to view them as a snapshot of their respective platforms, not of the business as an entire. 

Are there any reveals you had been stunned to see had been lacking? Or any you possibly can’t consider are actually that standard? Hit me up at ariel.shapiro@theverge.com.

That’s all for right now! I will probably be again Tuesday with the newest audio information.

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