Spotify’s Video Podcast Service Rolls Out to Free and Premium Users

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Spotify’s video podcast service is now available to users and creators in supported markets. The feature enables new content and audience engagement.

The takeaways
  • Spotify’s video podcast service has rolled out with a limited selection of shows viewable by most free and premium mobile and desktop users in supported markets.
  • The initial video shows include Book of Basketball 2.0, Fantasy Footballers, The Misfits Podcast, H3 Podcast, The Morning Toast, Higher Learning with Van Lathan & Rachel Lindsay, and The Rooster Teeth Podcast.
  • The releases place Spotify in direct competition with YouTube in terms of audience reach, though not necessarily revenue streams.

Sound and vision: In May, Spotify announced an exclusive licensing deal with popular podcaster Joe Rogan to bring his YouTube show over to Spotify. Spotify, therefore, needed to build the new feature to accommodate Rogan’s content.

  • Spotify’s first test involved 50% of YouTubers Zane Hijazi and Heath Hussar’s audience on their podcast Zane and Heath: Unfiltered.
  • A source told The Verge that Spotify would introduce its video podcast functionality as soon as possible.
  • For now, only certain podcasts can post Spotify videos, though the feature will roll out over time.
Spotify vs. YouTube:
  • Video podcasting and The Joe Rogan Experience’s acquisition – YouTube’s biggest podcast show – demonstrate Spotify’s ambitions in podcasting’s rapid expansion.
  • Though Spotify may not be able to compete with YouTube’s advantages – Google ads and Search discoverability – it offers a ready-made podcast audience for content creators.
  • Spotify podcasters can also offer different consumption options compared to YouTube, including streaming, downloading, listening and now viewing.

Spotify’s commitment to growing its podcasting business is notable. Its Q1 reporting showed around 19% of its monthly active users listened to podcast content, a 16% quarterly increase. The just-released Q2 report shows that this is now at 21%.

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