Podcasts have certainly become a popular source for news and entertainment distribution over the past few years, and on Android we are spoilt for app choice, with several very strong options for discovery, managing and playing podcasts from all over the globe. Google has however had a noticeable absence in the podcast space. Today that begins to change with Google announcing Podcasts are coming to Google Play Music.
Specifics of the program are a little sparse at the moment with the announcement introducing the initial 10 podcasting partners and inviting US based podcasters to upload their offerings to the service. It is unclear if podcast playback will be limited to US users at the as yet unknown launch date or if it is simply content creators that are limited to Google’s home nation.
The service is touting features similar to Google Play Music’s existing auto curation features where Google will serve up podcasts based on your mood, want to learn, laugh or get lost in a story the new service will select the correct podcast for your needs. This feature could certainly be good for both new and old listeners to the podcast space to discover new content they otherwise may not have found.
Managing relations with 3rd party developers is vital to any platform, and Google Play is no exception, so it is interesting to see Google make a move into the podcast space after so many years of relying on developers to service that marketplace. Google is advertising that “Google Play Music is the only app that supports podcasts to come preinstalled on all Android devices” in the promotional page for podcast creators, who Google also now has to nurture relationships with.
Google has a somewhat hit and miss track record of getting apps and services right, Google Fit a bit of a miss, the new Google Photos a massive hit. So it will be interesting to see how the service and the user-facing interface is presented. Will it be incorporated into the existing Google Play app, will they release a standalone Podcast app under a new Play Music range of apps? All I know is Google will have to really do something amazing with this service and its app before they could prise Pocket Casts of the homepage of all of my devices.
Are you excited for a Google Play Music’s Podcast offering? Let us know what Google has to do to get your using their podcasting app.