AfterPod — Simple Podcast Math

May 25, 2018 · 2 min read

There’s a lot going on in podcasting… exciting times for this emerging media segment and the future looks bright. Now might be a good time, though, to take a step back and add a little perspective.

Although consumption has almost tripled in the past decade, only 26% of Americans 12+ listened to a podcast last month.


Edison Research (April, 2018)

Apple vs Google

Apple has dominated the segment it spawned but the race has evened up. More people are consuming podcasts on smartphones, and Android devices are starting to dominate THAT segment.

Lusting for new listeners (and viewers… there ARE video podcasts), many podcasters think a native Android podcast app has the potential to significantly increase audience… that Google will add a dramatic boost to the industry.

I think they are grossly over-estimating the impact.

Besides, while a native app might help nominally, it’s not like there aren’t any apps that do the job… there are MANY.

What if…?

Imagine, if you will, that a new native Android app actually did, say, DOUBLE the total audience size! Twice as many as now use both Apple and Android! It would be astounding!

Yet, there would still only be 52% of people enjoying podcasts.


And 48% still sitting on the sidelines.


How Large is the Total Potential Audience?

Radio and TV experience participation rates in the 90–95% range… more often measured on a WEEKLY basis… and podcasting will, too.

However, it will take a lot more than a native Android app — or any typical media player — to make that happen.

Just my opinion.

From time to time, I write about podcasting and usually link to the articles on as well as post on Twitter. Here’s a recent one about podcast hosting companies.

I’m also creating a web media tool for people who want to access internet resources in a more intelligent manner. You can see the first deployment, still a work-in-progress, at

If you’re an experienced tech or innovative marketer, let’s talk about how we can influence the future of web media together. I can’t do this alone.


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