Apple starts with podcast subscriptions on Tuesday. Here’s what that does and doesn’t mean.

After a delay of about a month, Apple Podcasts start offering subscriptions–i.e. listen-for-a-fee podcasts–beginning Tuesday (June 15). Here’s what that does and doesn’t mean.

First, this does NOT mean the end of free podcasts. We’ll still be able to listen to our favourites for free. Instead, think of this as a premium plan that can unlock extra content.

For a fee–that’s still TBD–superfans of a podcast will be able to get all kinds of extras. This could mean:

  • Early access to episodes
  • Subscriber-only bonus episodes
  • Commercial-free episodes
  • Chances to somehow participate in podcasts in a deeper and more interactive way.

Watch for a “subscribe” button to start popping up on various programs available through Apple Podcasts starting next week. Meanwhile, Spotify is also getting to the subscription podcast game. We’ll have to watch them, too.

Again, if you don’t want to pay, you won’t have to. But if you want all the extras–well, we’ll see, right?

Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 30+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

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