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80-85 million US consumers listen to podcasts at least one hour per week

Usage of free and paid music services also increasing in post-pandemic world

New research from Parks Associates shows that 80-85 million US consumers ages 18 and older report they listen to a podcast for at least one hour each week. The research study, Podcasting: An Exploding Market, examines the impact of the rapid growth in the podcast market, including household audio equipment adoption, consumer behaviors across various platforms and genres, and crossover effects with consumption of music services.

The research firm reports smartphones are the most commonly used device for listening to podcasts and YouTube is the leading app/website used to access podcasts. Almost half of podcast listeners are 35-44 years old. Notably, podcast listening declines for ages 45 and older, indicating that content creators are overlooking this audience segment.

Household Podcasts Habits

 “Audiences self-select to listen to specific content, and the most popular means to discover new podcasts is through recommendations by friends and family. Since people often find new titles by asking people with similar interests, content creators will need to make extra efforts to attract a more diverse audience,” said Sarah Lee, research analyst, Parks Associates. “There is reward in expanding your reach, as currently more than 60% of podcast listeners pay some amount per month for a subscription. Consumers are also willing to pay for music services: 15% report use of the Spotify Premium service.”

The research includes insight into consumer spending on podcast content, equipment, and production; user experience and discovery sources; and segmentation by podcast listeners and producers, both professionally and personally. In addition, it addresses consumer adoption of music services.

About Parks Associates

Parks Associates, a woman-founded and certified business, is an internationally recognized market research and consulting company specializing in emerging consumer technology products and services. Founded in 1986, Parks Associates provides business intelligence and research services through its proprietary methodologies developed over decades, including quarterly surveys of 10,000 internet households.

The company's expertise crosses many industries: home security and smart home, streaming video, broadband and pay-TV services, digital media and platforms, gaming, Wi-Fi and home networks, connected health, support, consumer electronics, home control systems, energy management, and tech solutions for the multi-dwelling (MDU), small-to-medium business (SMB), and commercial building markets.

Each year, Parks Associates brings thousands of leaders together for its webinars and annual events. The firm hosts the annual executive research and strategy conferences CONNECTIONS™, Connected Health Summit, Smart Energy Summit, Smart Spaces, and Future of Video.

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