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Unlocking the Potential of Fiction Podcasts: A Call to Podcast App Developers

๐ŸŒˆ Abstract

The article discusses the differences in the first-time listener experience between audiobooks and fiction podcasts, and argues that fiction podcasts are fundamentally incompatible with most podcast-listening apps. It then provides a detailed analysis of the key characteristics that make a great fiction podcast-listening app, and evaluates 21 different podcast apps based on these criteria, ultimately recommending Apple Podcasts as the best option for listening to fiction podcasts.

๐Ÿ™‹ Q&A

[01] Comparing the first-time listener experience for audiobooks and fiction podcasts

1. What are the key differences in the first-time listener experience between audiobooks and fiction podcasts?

  • For audiobooks, the first-time listener experience is quite good - you can simply install the app, choose a book, and start listening from chapter one.
  • For fiction podcasts, the first-time listener experience is quite bad - you need to hunt for the right fiction podcast, follow/subscribe to it, and then navigate the often confusing episode order and structure.

2. Why does the author consider the fiction podcast first-time listener experience to be "fundamentally incompatible with most podcast-listening apps"?

  • The author argues that while experienced fiction podcast listeners have figured out ways to make their preferred apps work, regular people can't be bothered with the "bullshit" required to listen to fiction podcasts on most apps.
  • This is a problem because it keeps many potential listeners away from amazing fiction podcasts.

[02] Evaluating podcast apps for fiction podcast listening

1. What are the key characteristics the author considers important for a great fiction podcast-listening app?

  • Respecting the itunes:typeserial</itunes:type> tag to present episodes in the correct order
  • Grouping episodes by season number
  • Sorting episodes by episode number
  • Displaying season and episode number tags
  • Skipping trailers once the listener has started following the show

2. How does the author rank the 21 podcast apps evaluated, and why does Apple Podcasts come out on top?

  • The apps are scored and ranked based on how well they adhere to the key characteristics identified by the author.
  • Apple Podcasts ranks #1 because it best supports the needs of first-time fiction podcast listeners, even though it may not be the most popular app among seasoned podcast listeners.

3. What other features does the author consider important, but not as critical, for a fiction podcast-listening app?

  • Properly formatting the show description and episode details
  • Providing links to the show's website and episode-specific pages
  • Allowing one-click downloads of the entire show or season
  • Displaying episode-level artwork during playback
  • Recommending other fiction podcasts to listeners
Shared by Daniel Chen ยท
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