Apple is reportedly readying a new Podcast subscription service

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

What you need to know

  • Apple is reportedly talking to partners about creating a subscription service around podcasts.

Apple is working with its partners to bring a subscription service to podcasts, according to a new report.

Citing unnamed sources, Bloomberg reports that Apple is adding a subscription service to its podcasting business at some point this year as it considers funding new original programming.

Apple has discussed the plan to create a subscription service with its partners, said the people, who asked not to be identified because of nondisclosure agreements. The company also has talked about stepping up funding for new shows and marketing, the people said.

While it isn't known what the service would be named, the obvious option would be Podcasts+, following Apple's existing naming convention for other services like Apple TV+, News+, and Fitness+.

While Apple reportedly declined to comment when asked about the plans, Podcasts+ wouldn't be the first premium podcast experience on the market. Competitor Spotify already offers something similar. However, a similar report comes courtesy of The Information, with that one suggesting Apple could charge for podcasts on a case-by-case basis rather than an all-you-can-eat subscription.

Apple—long considered the sleeping giant in the podcast space—is waking up. The company, which runs the most widely used podcasting app in the industry, is discussing launching a new subscription service that would charge people to listen to podcasts, according to people familiar with the matter.Talks between Apple and production companies about the new subscription offering are underway, although it's unclear when—or whether—Apple will launch the new service. People caution that Apple mulls over many ideas for media services and doesn't always proceed with them.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.