iTunes to support podcasts (and Forrester's podcasting forecast)
By Charlene Li
Just saw on various blogs that iTunes 4.9 will support podcasts. Steve Jobs made the announcement at D: All Things Digital Conference last night. The service will be available within 60 days, Jobs said.
This will make the whole podcasting phenomenon SO much easier. I've just been playing with a few other RSS aggregators this morning and noticed that You Software's RSS reader allows one-click subscription to podcasts and automatically downloads the files into iTunes. I'm sure there are other aggregators will allow you to do this -- I'm just getting caught up so let me know what you're favorite podcasting solution is!
Jobs also mentioned that he'll include a directory of podcasts, allow publishers to add podcasts to the directory, and even allow them to charge for podcasts. As a long-time subscriber to Audible, I find this a very interesting alternative, even substitute to Audible's subscription programs. If I can easily find and download my favorite broadcasts -- even if I have to pay -- I'll switch. Audible better get its podcasting act together very soon!
Lastly, I realized that I hadn't written about Forrester's podcasting forecast. It makes a little appearance in The Future Of Digital Audio report that my colleague, Ted Schadler wrote in March (available to clients only). He looks at podcasting as a "time-shifted audio experience" with adoption driven by a combination of broadband penetration and MP3 ownership. 2005 forecast is 300,000 US households using, rising to 12.3 million US households by 2010. This feels about right -- that will be 36% of all MP3 owners in 2010 that also use podcasts.
Sites discussing the iTunes announcement: