Spotify is set to surpass Apple Podcasts as the #1 podcast app in the U.S.

Spotify Podcasts
Spotify Podcasts (Image credit: Spotify/The Verge)

What you need to know

  • Spotify is set to surpass Apple Podcasts with the most listeners.
  • The service is projected to have 28.2 million monthly podcast listeners by the end of 2021.
  • That would pass Apple Podcasts which is projected to end the year with 28 million monthly listeners.

It looks Spotify might become number one in another area: podcasts.

According to a new report from eMarketer the #1 streaming music service is set to surpass Apple Podcasts as the #1 podcasting service as well. The report anticipates Spotify to end the year with 28.2 million monthly podcast listeners over Apple Podcasts' 28 million in the United States.

Spotify is still expanding its podcast listenership in the US, while Apple Podcasts' has essentially stagnated. In fact, Spotify will narrowly surpass Apple in that metric by the end of this year. The Swedish streaming company will have 28.2 million monthly podcast listeners over Apple's 28.0 million, a razor-thin lead that will widen in the years to come.

The report does on to say that Spotify's growth will continue all of the way through the forecasted year of 2025. It anticipates the streaming service to grow from 28.2 million listeners to 43.6 million by the end of 2025. That would be equivalent to 12.7% of the population of the country.

  • This year, 40.0% of US internet users will tune in to podcasts at least once per month. Given the medium's rapid listener growth thus far, we expect that growth to slow down for the next few years.
  • Despite this overall deceleration, Spotify's growth among that listener base will continue to increase through the end of our forecast period in 2025.
  • YouTube and Google Podcasts are also popular platforms for podcast listening in the US. Amazon Music continues to build out its audio offerings and invest in the medium. (We do not yet publish podcast listener forecasts for these platforms.)

Apple has been making moves to compete with Spotify recently in the area of podcasting. The company launched the new Apple Podcasts Subscriptions product, redesigned the app, and is launching original podcasts based on content from 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.