The Future Of Podcasts
Podcasts have been around for a long time, longer than many seem to think. The trend first started in earnest as long ago as 2008, but did not catch on in terms of popularity. At least, it did not catch on as much as platforms such as YouTube. For the most part, podcasts were considered niche. Or to be more accurate, they were considered niche until recently. Recent statistics have announced that podcasts are more popular than television in certain key demographics. This is a phenomenal revolution, and certainly set to make waves in the entertainment industry in general. But who exactly is listening to podcasts, and how are they set to evolve, now that they are being recognised as a key, untapped form of entertainment?
Reports have revealed that those listening to podcasts, in the United States, are young, educated, and earn a good income. And most notable is that this audience listens at least five hours a week. As already stated, this tops the statistics of people of the same demographic watching television. It is the first time that podcasts have boasted such an enormous fan base, and this number of hours listened per week is only set to increase in the future. Of course, as the number of listener’s increases, the expectation is that the audience will spread into other demographics, widening the podcast reach even further. In other words; podcasts are possibly set to be the next biggest form of popular entertainment, and could even grow to have as many fans as a top casino online brand has. But why has interest in podcasts increased so dramatically?
The most obvious answer is that the podcast format has been adopted by a number of new big names. For years podcasts were only the work of amateurish, or less than professional groups. But, with big names such as Joe Rogan taking on the podcast format, interest has increased dramatically. Joe Rogan, a former martial artist, stand up comedian, and host of the popular Fear Factor series, entered into doing daily podcasts only recently. However, given the extremely professional manner in which Rogan approached the format, and the politically charged nature of the subjects he tackles, he has managed to draw worldwide attention. He, along with other big names, have breathed life into the podcast format.
So where will podcast evolve to in the future, given the growing market, and the rapid evolution of available technology? A new software application called Detour is already taking podcasts into a new era. The concept of the technology is simple; the audio is related to the location in which the user is currently walking. The audio involved is, therefore, based on the significance of the surrounding area, creating a new, immersive, and interesting form of listening to podcasts. A person may, for example, be suggested a podcast that is related to a specific neighbourhood, landmark, or even the unique foliage of an area. In this way podcast listeners can experience an area sensitive listening system like never before. Detour is currently still in Beta, but the potential for such technology is clear. Future evolutions of this technology may see an even more focused and refined system, allowing users to get podcast tour-guides, or even tutors, depending on the personal desires of the user. Plus, given that many big name advertising companies have expressed interest into personalised digital advertising for podcast listeners, it seems clear that the future is one with much more interest in the podcast world. It seems like only a matter of time before podcasts become a new wave of personalised technological advancement in many ways.