Podcast app

Apple acquired the Scout FM Podcast app earlier this year

In order to continue improving its experience with podcast offerings, Apple earlier this year purchased the Scout FM podcast app, reports Bloomberg.

Scout FM’s website is now gone, but it was available on iPhones, Android devices, and Amazon smart speakers. Scout FM generated podcast stations covering various topics, similar to a radio station but for a podcast experience.

A person could select a specific topic and then find podcasts related to that topic, with the service also offering recommendations based on listening history and personal preferences. TechCrunch explained how it worked in 2018:

Scout.fm wants to change the way people listen to podcasts. Instead of going through the 500,000+ shows in your current podcast app, this startup’s new curated podcast service will just ask you a few questions to find out what you like, and then create a custom podcast station for you. The experience is primarily designed for use on smart speakers, like Amazon’s Alexa-powered Echo devices, but is also available as iOS and Android apps.

According to Bloomberg, Scout FM was a popular iPhone podcast app that worked with CarPlay, and was available for Alexa-based devices.

An Apple spokesperson confirmed the purchase at Bloomberg with Apple’s standard acquisition statement, but did not provide details on how the app’s technology will be used.

Apple’s competitor Spotify has made significant investments in the podcasting space, which has also prompted Apple to make updates. Apple plans to enhance its podcast offerings with original podcast content that will be exclusive to the Podcasts app.

Apple plans to create audio spinoffs from some of its original TV and movie content, but it is also looking to purchase original podcast programs that could also tie into future Apple TV + shows.

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