Spotify plays up to Apple with its own paid podcast subscriptions

The paid podcast service will offer a better deal for creators

Spotify Podcasts
(Image credit: Spotify)

Just a week after Apple announced its premium podcast offerings, Spotify announced its own podcast subscription service. Currently only available in the US, the service is due to roll out internationally over the coming months. What makes this different from the Apple setup is how much of the fee goes to the creators.

As with Apple, podcast creators can set their own fee for the podcasts but are limited to $2.99, $4.99, or $7.99 (approx AU$3.99, AU$6.50 or AU$10.50) per month. While Apple is due to take 30% of this (reducing to 15% in year two), Spotify is letting creators keep 100% of earnings for the first two years. After which, they plan to introduce a 5% fee.

The Wall Street Journal originally broke the story last week on Spotify’s plans and reported that Apple users would be taken off the app to pay for the service, avoiding Apple’s payment rules. Tech Crunch, who gave the full release details yesterday, explained that creators will be able to mark entire feeds as paid or offer fee episodes to entice listeners.

Podcasts have become more popular during the recent lockdowns and are bringing in huge ad revenues (nearly $1 billion in the US alone, according to The Wall Street Journal). However, it’s still unclear if users are ready to pay for their podcast content, especially on top of their music streaming services.

Spotify also announced this week that it would be raising its prices in the UK, from £4.99 to £5.99 for Spotify Student, from £12.99 to £13.99 for its Duo package and from £14.99 to £16.99 for the family package. In the US, only the family package is increasing from $14.99 to $15.99. This makes it more expensive than Apple and Amazon Music Unlimited for family users.

Mat Gallagher

As T3's Editor-in-Chief, Mat Gallagher has his finger on the pulse for the latest advances in technology. He has written about technology since 2003 and after stints in Beijing, Hong Kong and Chicago is now based in the UK. He’s a true lover of gadgets, but especially anything that involves cameras, Apple, electric cars, musical instruments or travel.