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Spotify launches paid podcasts feature, to take 5 percent cut starting 2023

Spotify has launched paid podcasts on its platform. 
Spotify has launched paid podcasts on its platform.  (Unsplash)

While there are no plans to charge creators for the first two years, Spotify says it will take a “competitive” fee of five percent in 2023.

Spotify on Tuesday launched paid podcasts on its streaming platform, opening the service up to all its users who create podcasts via the Anchor app. The service will be free for the next two years, after which the company will start taking a small cut in 2023.

While it was speculated that Spotify would launch a paid podcast service in the near future, the company’s announcement today comes hot on the heels of Apple’s ‘Spring Launch’ announcement last week which announced changes to its podcast app introducing paid podcasts. Apple’s redesigned podcasts app arrived along with iOS 14.5, which added several other system improvements and security fixes.

Also read: Spotify plans hiring spree in bid to challenge Clubhouse

Spotify says that the paid podcasts feature will be handled via the Anchor app, so any creators who want to participate can mark a certain episode as “subscriber-only” which will publish them to Spotify and other platforms. While there are no plans to charge creators for the first two years, Spotify says it will take a “competitive” fee of five percent in 2023.

Spotify says creators can mark certain episodes as paid-only. 
Spotify says creators can mark certain episodes as paid-only.  (Spotify)

Users can also subscribe to a paid-only podcast feed, which could come in handy for exclusive podcast channels. Unfortunately, the service also said that users who want to subscribe to their favourite creators will have to do so via Anchor, which means it won’t be seamless and possible to complete from inside the Spotify app.

In addition to paid podcast streaming, the company also announced a new Spotify Audience Network for ads, which will allow creators who want to insert commercials into free podcasts, which will be available starting next month. One major advantage for Spotify will be the ability to reach Android users with its paid podcasts service, something that Apple’s Podcasts cannot match.

Read more: Spring Loaded: Apple launches Podcasts Subscriptions

The last feature announced by Spotify is the arrival of the Spotify Open Access Platform that allows creators who have listeners on other platforms to access their exclusive content on Spotify using their existing credentials. “This gives creators with existing subscriber bases the option to deliver paid content to their existing paid audiences using Spotify, retaining direct control over the relationship,” Spotify said, adding that the feature was still in testing.

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