Samsung has launched a podcast listening component to some of its phones, appropriately called Samsung Podcasts. The company says it’s for “users who want easier access to their favorite podcasts.” Doubters might say it’s no easier than a podcast app on the phone’s desktop, but we think ease of use is a golden rule of media adoption, and putting an podcasts into a membership ecosystem makes sense … especially on Android phones which lack the heritage of Apple podcast distribution.
Samsung emphasizes the ease-of-use sensibility: “By simply tapping ‘play,’ Samsung Podcasts provides instant access without having to create another account.” There is consumer appeal and logic in that.
Putting that aside, there do seem to be limitations. For one, the feature is for “compatible” phones: Galaxy S21, Galaxy S20, Galaxy Note20, Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note10 devices.
There appear to be catalog limitations. Simultaneous with Samsung’s announcement is PR from American Public Media, announcing that APM is a launch partner for Samsung Podcasts. And Samsung’s wording implies deals with a raft of podcast networks:
“Samsung Podcasts offers instant access to thousands of podcasts from leading podcast publishers and hosts.”
Listed networks include American Public Media, Blubrry Podcasting, CNN Audio, Conde Nast, iHeartMedia, Kast Media, Libsyn, Motley Fool, NPR, PodcastOne, PRX, This American Life, Vox Media Podcast Network and Barstool Sports.