Infinite Dial: Steady rise for podcasting; continued super-listening


infinite dial 2017 PODCASTING 60percent

In today’s Infinite Dial 2017 webinar, we learned that recognition of podcasting, and listening, are continuing to grow.

The latest data show that familiarity with the term “podcasting” has been on a very gradual uptick over the past decade. The past two years have had bigger hops for this metric, growing from 49% in 2015 to 55% in 2016 and now 60% in 2017. That’s an estimated population of 168 million that has at least heard of podcasting.

Listenership for podcasts has also been inching upward. It stands at 40% in the latest results, growing from 36% in 2016 and 33% in 2015. The share of respondents who listened to a podcast in the past month is now 24%, compared with 21% in 2016 and 17% in 2015. About 42 million, or 15% said they listened to a podcast in the past week.

In terms of demographic data, 27% of respondents aged 12-24 listened to a podcast in the past month. The proportion was 31% for ages 25-54 and 12% for 55+. Men had 27% listenership in the last month compared with 21% for women.

Infinite Dial 2017 number podcasts weekly

As we’ve seen in past Edison Research findings, those people who are listening to any podcasts are devoted fans of the format. For the group that listened to shows in the past week, they actually tune in to an average of five shows a week.

The data also points to commitment once an episode begins. Forty percent listen to the entire episode, and 45% listen to “most of the podcast.” Only 10% listen to less than half.

Finally, Infinite Dial reported on the details of listener habits. A big majority of podcast listeners, 77%, click on an episode and listen immediately, while 41% said they download manually and listen later. For 27%, they subscribe to a show and download episodes automatically for later listening.

One other important metric: Podcasting is consumed in the car by 19% of survey respondents, the first year that the question has been asked.

RAIN News Staff


  1. Very true. Podcasting is coming of age, more so in the recent years, and is finding a devoted audience in any specific niche. These statistics are a validation of this exciting and growing trend.

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