Podcast app

Google is developing an experimental podcast app called Shortwave

An experimental unit within Google is quietly developing a new app for discovering and playing podcasts. Called Shortwave, the new app was revealed by a trademark filing embedded below, which describes it as “allowing[ing] users to search, access and play digital audio files and to share links to audio files.

Nothing in the trademark filing specifies what type of audio is accessed, but a Google representative said the app focuses on speech content. There’s little public information about the app, though Google has toyed with smart captioning, translation, and other AI-assisted features in previous podcast products.

Google trademark registration for Shortwave.

Achieved by The edgea Google spokesperson pointed out that the application was under development within the company’s Area 120 incubator, and is not tied to any existing Google product. “One of the many projects we’re working on within Area 120 is Shortwave, which helps users discover and consume spoken audio in new ways,” the spokesperson said. “Like other projects in Area 120, this is very early experience, so there aren’t many details to share at this time.”

Google launched its current Android podcast app in June, nearly a month before the trademark filing, including cross-device syncing and deep integration with Google Assistant. It’s unclear how Shortwave would be different from this app, although it’s likely that the two were developed in isolation.