By Matt Binder
Podcasting just hit a major milestone.
There are now more than one million podcast shows on Apple Podcasts, according to Apple.
Let me reiterate: we don’t mean episodes. We’re talking more than one million individual podcast shows: As in the shows which then release their episodes. That’s a lot of podcasts.
Apple confirmed in an email to Mashable that Apple Podcasts hit more than one million podcasts and that this milestone was reached on Monday, April 20.
While this milestone was already approaching it appears the coronavirus pandemic helped make it happen now. There was a big boost in new podcasts in March and April, according to , a third-party industry resource that tracks podcast data. That’s when people around the world began staying home due to lockdowns, quarantines, and stay-at-home orders.
“We’ve never seen such a boom in raw numbers of new podcasts as we’ve seen in the last few months.”
“We’ve never seen such a boom in raw numbers of new podcasts as we’ve seen in the last few months,” said My Podcast Reviews founder Daniel J. Lewis in an email to Mashable. “The raw numbers of new podcast additions has been steadily increasing, but March brought the biggest jump in new additions.”
Apple could not confirm metrics showing a rise in new podcasts since the pandemic at this time. However, the company has noticed particular growth in News, Kids & Family, and Comedy podcasts, as well as engagement with the podcasts in those categories over the past month, on its public charts.
According to My Podcast Reviews’ , the last six months of 2019 saw anywhere from around 25,000 to 40,000 new podcasts each month. In January and February of 2020, there were around 48,000 and 50,000 new shows on Apple Podcasts, respectively.
However, these numbers jumped in March when more than 63,000 new shows were added. So far, for the month of April, there’s been just under 70,000 new podcasts on Apple Podcasts. (Interestingly, My Podcast Reviews put out a based on its data, heralding the milestone on April 17, one business day before Apple’s official date for hitting one million podcasts.)
This milestone was a long time coming for podcasting — It took more than 15 years for the medium to hit one million shows.
“Podcasting” as a term was first coined in 2004 with Apple formally rolling out podcast support in iTunes in 2005. While there’s been some recently in the podcasting space for the first time, Apple’s iTunes — now spun off as Apple Podcasts — has long been the leading platform in the industry.
It should be noted that not all of the one million podcasts are active. Podcasts are removed from time to time. However, Apple does not remove shows simply because of inactivity, no matter how long it’s been since their last show. Lewis says that more than 46 percent of all podcasts on Apple Podcasts have published at least one episode in the last 90 days.
Also, there are certainly podcasts out there that are not on Apple Podcasts, such as subscription-only shows or podcasts created by Apple’s podcasting competitors. Those are much fewer and far between. Apple Podcasts numbers are the closest-to-accurate metric the industry has for its data.
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So, there are more than one million podcasts. If it feels like everyone’s starting a podcast nowadays, now you know why.
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