Nine podcast highlights in the BBC Annual Report 2022

The BBC generously released its annual report for 2022-2-23. Here, we identify nine key points in the 82-page document about the institution’s metrics about, and plans for, podcasting.


“We want BBC Sounds to be the best place for audiences to listen to BBC audio content.” –BBC annual report 2022


  1. “In radio the pace of change is rapid, and while 89% of adults use broadcast radio each week on average, music streaming and podcasts now make up close to 60% of 15-24s listening time.”
  2. “Today, music streaming and podcasting make up close to 60% of 15-24s listening time (compared to 40% pre-pandemic) and 19% for all adults (16% pre-pandemic).” [MIDAS]
  3. “Podcasting still accounts for a relatively small proportion of overall UK audio time (5% for those aged 15+). However, it is growing rapidly – 20% of UK consumers listen to a podcast weekly compared to 11% four years ago.”
  4. “Of weekly podcast listeners, Spotify is the top platform used with a 36% reach, followed by Apple (26%) and BBC Sounds (24%).”


  1. The BBC has hired a Chief Product Officer “to ensure the BBC continues to be at the forefront of digital innovation.” Some of the podcast-related product goals: “Continuing to improve BBC Sounds with more effective personalisation, curation and search functionality. We will also trial making some BBC radio programme podcasts available for on-demand listening first on BBC Sounds.”
  2. “Our news podcast portfolio will focus on delivering more audience impact from fewer titles.”
  3. “Continue to support grassroots UK talent through schemes like the Sounds Audio Lab, and will trial showcasing a small number of distinctive third-party podcasts in BBC Sounds as well as experimenting with new audio content formats.”
  4. “As part of our commitment to supporting new talent, our inaugural Sounds Audio Lab participants will showcase their new podcasts on BBC Sounds.”
  5. “We will develop our podcast offer with new multilingual podcasts, including a new series of My Indian Life and an international podcast competition in Latin America.”


Brad Hill