Apple looks for ways to improve podcasting

Some interesting tidbits from John Herrman writing for the New York Times, including an apparent podcasting summit held at Apple last month:

Late last month, Apple brought seven leading podcast professionals to the company’s campus in Cupertino, Calif., to air their case to a room full of employees, according to two people who were there. The people would speak only on the condition of anonymity because they had signed nondisclosure agreements. The company made no promises, the people said, but several pressing issues for podcasters were discussed in frank terms.

The question for podcasters — and for Apple — is about what comes next. Apple has at least two obvious choices: to rush to accommodate an industry that is quickly outgrowing its origins, or to let podcasting be, at the risk of losing its claim over a medium that owes its very name to the company.

It’s difficult to see how Apple, having no revenue directly attributed to podcasting, would prioritize working on new features for podcasters. As Eddy Cue said, podcasts may “hold a special place” at Apple but without a clear business need, how does Apple justify the cost of development?

In a statement, Mr. Cue of Apple said, “We have more people than ever focused on podcasting, including engineers, editors and programmers.” He added, “Podcasts hold a special place with us at Apple.”