It’s not just the addition of artificial intelligence that Apple is relying on to help listeners find new podcasts. It’s also implementing something a lot more low-tech. This summer the company is making several changes to show categories—adding some, renaming others while discontinuing some subcategories. That means podcasters may need to update how they classify their shows to ensure listeners can find them.
Apple Podcasts will now include several new top-level category names. Most notably, the list includes the addition of a designated True Crime category to capitalize on what’s arguably the medium’s hottest format. Dozens of other top-level categories are also being added, such as Fiction and History. Many others will be renamed. For example, Sports and Recreation will become Sports; News & Politics will become News; and Games & Hobbies will become Leisure. Apple also says some subcategories will be discontinued. Read the full list of the new Apple Podcast categories HERE. “You can make changes to your show’s category now, and they’ll go live on Apple Podcasts later this summer,” Apple told podcasters in an email.
The Apple Worldwide Developers Conference 2019 this week also brought news that Apple plans to use artificial intelligence to help improve the search and discovery of new shows on its platform. Craig Federighi, Senior VP of Software Engineering, told the annual gathering that Apple will use machine learning to index the spoken word content of podcasts so users can search that content and find a podcast they want with “just a few clicks.”
Those clicks will come in what for many will be a new standalone Apple Podcast app. With the release of the next version of MacOS called Catalina, the company is killing off iTunes and giving podcasters a dedicated app. The iTunes breakup, at least on iOS devices, will also mean new dedicated Apple Music and Apple TV apps. “The future of iTunes is not one app, but three,” Federighi said.
Apple is also making it easier for podcasters and streaming music companies to find users of the Apple Watch. The company said the device is now getting its own App Store. It means users won’t have to rely on their companion iPhone to find or download apps.
Read the full list of the new Apple Podcast categories HERE.