Apple is launching its own daily podcast. The company announced the show today along with other news about audio stories coming to Apple News and curated local Apple News collections, as well as the release of iOS 13.6. The show, called Apple News Today, will be hosted by Apple News editors Shumita Basu and Duarte Geraldino. New episodes, which will be seven to eight minutes long, will be released Monday through Friday, and the show will exclusively be available through Apple News and Apple Podcasts in the US, Canada, the UK, and Australia.
Additionally, Apple will release 20 audio stories a week through Apple News Plus. The stories will be voiced by professional actors, and there will be narrated longform pieces published by big-name outlets like Esquire, GQ, New York magazine, and Vanity Fair. Only Apple News Plus subscribers will have access. Both these stories and Apple News Today are accessible through the audio tab at the bottom of the News app. CarPlay will also support these audio features, meaning people can listen to them as they drive.
Finally, in non-audio news, Apple says it’s launching curated local news in the Bay Area, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco. Each of these will feature a major newspaper in the area and will include coverage of local community news. A subscription to Apple News Plus in the US also now includes access to The Charlotte Observer, the Idaho Statesman, The Kansas City Star, the Miami Herald, The News & Observer, and The State. In Canada, Le Devoir will be available to Apple News Plus subscribers, as well as The Globe and Mail.
The biggest news is Apple News Today. This is Apple’s first major foray into podcast production, and the daily news format is an especially crowded one. The New York Times releases its popular program The Daily, while Vox Media releases Today Explained and The Wall Street Journal has The Journal, among others. The fact that Apple is making its show Apple-exclusive is even more noteworthy.
Up until now, Apple has been the de facto face of podcasting’s open ecosystem, particularly compared to Spotify, which has focused on big-name exclusive podcast deals to grow its platform. Apple, on the other hand, hasn’t signed exclusive deals and instead promotes other producers’ work in its curated lists. This might be the start of Apple’s earnest jump into podcasting.