Big news in the world of podcasts! Google Podcasts is saying goodbye, but don’t worry, it’s not disappearing completely. Starting next year, Google is changing things up. Instead of having a separate Google Podcasts app, they’re going to make podcast listening a part of YouTube Music.
This change isn’t a complete surprise. A while back, in April, Google made it possible for people in the US to listen to podcasts in YouTube Music without needing a paid membership. So, you can enjoy your favorite podcasts offline and in the background while using YouTube Music. And the best part? They plan to make this feature available to everyone around the world before the end of 2023.
Let’s take a quick trip down memory lane: Google Podcasts first came to life in 2018 on Android, offering users a way to listen to podcasts for free and even get personalized recommendations. Then, in 2020, Google gave it a facelift and brought it to iOS. You could also access it on the web, Windows, and macOS.
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Now, looking ahead to 2024, YouTube Music is getting a makeover to become an even better place for both podcast fans and creators. They’re adding some YouTube-exclusive features that will help you discover new podcasts, connect with communities, and switch between audio and video seamlessly. As part of this exciting transformation, Google Podcasts will be discontinued later in 2024.
Why, you might ask? Well, YouTube says this change is all about following the crowd. They’ve looked at the data, and it turns out that a whopping 23 percent of folks in the US who listen to podcasts every week prefer YouTube over other platforms, while only 4 percent go for Google Podcasts.
To make the transition smooth, YouTube will provide an easy tool for moving your podcasts over to YouTube Music. You’ll even be able to add your podcast RSS feeds to your YouTube Music library. Plus, they’re working on a nifty tool that lets you download a file of all your subscribed shows, so you can take them to other podcast apps if you wish.
So, while Google Podcasts is going to the podcast graveyard, it’s all in the name of making your podcast experience even better on YouTube Music. Exciting changes are on the horizon!