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Why Apple Broke Podcasting

by | May 4, 2021

Podcast Player Got You Down?

Find out how to get away from the horrible Apple podcast player – which is “now an active hinderance to listening to podcasts“.

Apple have broken their non-profitable upkeep/porting of a slightly odd situation with the XML feed system, to make a long story very short, as far as I understand it.

Why? Essentially, because from what I can determine from catching up with the Podcasting 2 podcast, it was a free element of infrastructure that suited Apple while they needed it, but now that monetisation of podcasts is the new push from the major players, they are changing how podcasts are delivered, and these older elements of the podcast delivery structure [it’s complicated] are being turned off [which is a huge opportunity].

The original version of these feeds [the original podcast index] was actually given to Apple by ‘the podfather‘ Adam Curry, who let Steve Jobs have the list back in the day. They, in turn, based their whole podcast app in iTunes on Adam’s list. 

Adam Curry – Podfather Returns To Save Us All

This change in events was anticipated quite some time ago by Adam Curry et al, who have set up a new and vastly improved system that allows a better way to do this which is future-proof and not under centralised control. As luck [or their hard work, honestly] would have it, this system has just recently become mature enough to handle the load of all podcasts everywhere. 

Adam has started a new Podcasting Index and there are many new Podcasting Apps you can switch to right away. 

There’s a bunch of new apps using a new and improved protocol [hence podcasting 2.0] and I strongly suggest that you take this oppo and get the hell away from Apple’s disaster asap and jump into a better world right away.

I did, and the Podverse player is excellent. 

I’ve been using Podverse for a few days now, no power issues, the UI is crisp and coherent [imagine!] and I swear that even the actual audio sounds better. It’s not perfect yet, and I expect many more features to be added over time, but it’s already so much better than the Apple disgrace. 

There’s also a crypto angle, with Lightning Network systems [remember them!? – layer 2 Bitcoin side-chain trustless atomic payment chanels] are heavily involved with a new listener donation feature that I think will be massive. See Breeze wallet for more – ‘Podcasts On Blockchain‘.


Where To Listen For More Info


You will, of course, be needing a podcast to catch up on all these Podcasting 2.0 advancements and enhancements, so devs can head on over to Podcasting 2.0 – the second best podcast in the universe – where you can dig for hours and find out the very long and complicated story of: Why Apple Broke Podcasting [and what you can do about it].

It’s a nice surprise to find Lightning Labs pop up in this context. 

Podcasting 2.0

Lightning solves these problems with the same method it solves many others: by decentralizing the network. The only obstacle — until a few months ago — was how to bring Lightning together with podcasting. As soon as Adam Curry told me about the podcast:value standard, which he developed with Dave Jones, I saw that they had already done the heavy lifting of compiling an index and a standard protocol. In order to unite the free, direct, creator-to-listener structure of podcasting with the free, direct, payer-to-recipient structure of Lightning, we just had to plug their protocol into Breez with a couple of bells and whistles. (Actually, it’s more like rockets and confetti.)

The podcast:value standard lets creators list themselves on the Podcast Index as Lightning-enabled content. There’s even a wizard to help podcasters get on the index and automatically listed in the Breez catalog. Users can then subscribe directly over an RSS feed, and podcasters can collect users’ payments directly over Lightning. As a whole, Adam and Dave call this kind of interaction (as well as their podcast about it) Podcasting 2.0.