Apple acquires Scout FM, an app that turned podcasts into radio stations

Browse Podcasts on iPhone 11 Pro
Browse Podcasts on iPhone 11 Pro (Image credit: Christine Romero-Chan / iMore)

What you need to know

  • Apple has acquired Scout FM.
  • The startup turned podcast listening into a more traditional radio experience.
  • The app has shut down on the App Store, Google Play Store, and Amazon after the acquisition.

Reported by Bloomberg, Apple has acquired Scout FM, a startup that turning your podcast listening into a more of a traditional radio experience.

While podcast apps, including Apple's, traditionally work by letting users pick an individual podcast to listen to, Scout FM created podcast stations on various topics. For example, if a person is interested in sports, the app would create a station that mixed together a curated selection of sports podcasts.

The app reportedly determines the podcast episodes that are featured in your station using your listening history, preference selection, and artificial intelligence.

Scout FM was popular among some users of Apple devices and could be integrated with CarPlay, the interface that appears on supported car screens when connected to an iPhone, and Apple's Siri digital assistant. It was also optimized for devices based on Inc.'s Alexa.

According to Bloomberg, a spokesperson for Apple did confirm that they did acquire the company, but would not comment further. Apple traditionally does not comment on these matters, just like its acquisitions of NextVR, Dark Sky, and others from earlier this year.

The deal for Scout FM is one of several Apple has made so far in 2020. It recently acquired payments company Mobeewave, weather app Dark Sky and virtual-reality content broadcasting company NextVR. Other purchases include Voysis, and Inductiv to improve Siri and artificial intelligence, Fleetsmith for enterprise device management and VR software startup Spaces.

Apple has been ramping up its focus on podcasts. The company has plans to release podcasts that are tied in with their shows on Apple TV+.

Joe Wituschek

Joe Wituschek is a Contributor at iMore. With over ten years in the technology industry, one of them being at Apple, Joe now covers the company for the website. In addition to covering breaking news, Joe also writes editorials and reviews for a range of products. He fell in love with Apple products when he got an iPod nano for Christmas almost twenty years ago. Despite being considered a "heavy" user, he has always preferred the consumer-focused products like the MacBook Air, iPad mini, and iPhone 13 mini. He will fight to the death to keep a mini iPhone in the lineup. In his free time, Joe enjoys video games, movies, photography, running, and basically everything outdoors.