Google has announced that Google Podcasts will be discontinued in 2024. Podcast listeners using the platform will be migrated to YouTube Music, marking a consolidation of Google's audio streaming services. The move aligns with Google´s vision to enhance the podcast experience on YouTube Music and leverage its unique features, such as community engagement, content discovery, and seamless audio/visual switching.
Enhanced Podcast Experience on YouTube Music
YouTube Music is set to become Google's primary podcasting app and service, receiving a series of updates aimed at improving the user experience. These updates include full global availability by the end of 2023 and introducing features such as background play, audio and video podcast switching, and offline access. “We're living in the golden age of podcasts,” stated the YouTube Team, emphasizing the platform's potential to boost audience growth across various formats.
Migration Tools and User Adaptation
To facilitate a smooth transition, Google will introduce a “simple migration tool” allowing users to transfer their existing subscriptions from Google Podcasts to YouTube Music. Additionally, users will have the ability to add podcasts via RSS feeds, even those not currently hosted by YouTube. For users preferring alternative platforms, Google will offer a non-YouTube Music export option through an OPML file, compatible with other podcast players. The company is committed to gathering feedback to ensure the migration process is as straightforward as possible, releasing the tools with clear guidelines once deemed ready.
Looking ahead to 2024, Google plans to increase its investment in the podcast experience on YouTube Music, aiming to create a centralized destination that benefits both fans and podcasters. The platform will offer YouTube-only capabilities and robust creation and analytics tools for content creators. Despite the upcoming changes, Google assures that, for the time being, users will continue to have access to YouTube, YouTube Music, and Google Podcasts. The company pledges transparency in communicating future changes and developments in the coming months.