Spotify acquires startup that can improve podcast discovery

Podz uses machine learning technology to generate clips featuring key moments in a podcast.

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Spotify has purchased a startup called Podz that could make it easier to find new podcasts to listen to on the platform. It's part of the streaming service's massive podcast push that's been going on for the past few years, which will most likely continue, especially now that it has a paid subscription plan for the format. Podz uses machine learning technology to generate high-quality clips featuring key moments in a podcast that users can listen to. It could give potential new subscribers a preview — presumably a more vivid one than what a written description or a random sample can provide — of what a podcast is about.

As 9to5Mac notes, the announcement comes after The Verge reported that Facebook will launch podcasts next week. The social network's podcast product will allow listeners to create shareable one-minute clips of the audio shows to increase visibility and engagement. While the Podz acquisition could give podcast discoverability a boost on Spotify, the company introduced several features over the past years to bring audio shows in front of new audiences. In April, for instance, it launched a "Top Episodes" ranking for its charts that gives users the chance to discover even relatively unknown podcasts. It also added music and podcast search filters on its iOS and Android apps back in May.

In its announcement, Spotify said it will integrate Podz's technology into its service and that listeners will see elements of its technology before the year ends.