Facebook announced it will add a podcast player separate from the in-app Spotify player. The new feature, rolling out in the coming months to Facebook users, will let podcasters distribute their content directly through Facebook.
How this will work is still unknown but, it's possible it could function via RSS or podcasters will have the ability to upload their podcasts directly to the social media network. CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently discussed Facebook's new partnership with Spotify during a chat with Platformer, going into detail about the Spotify mini-player and how it is primarily music focused.
Facebook's interest in supporting podcasts makes a great deal of business sense. The ad revenue alone from podcasts will be a huge boon for the company.
A statement released on the Facebook About page states, "While we’re big believers in the power of short-form audio, we also know that some stories and conversations deserve more airtime. More than 170 million people are already connected to hundreds of thousands of podcast pages on Facebook, and more than 35 million people are members of fan groups around podcasts. Still, until now, you had to leave the Facebook app to listen to these episodes."
Facebook continued, "Within the next few months, you’ll be able to listen to podcasts directly on the Facebook app — both while using the app or when the app is backgrounded. And because it’s still hard to discover podcasts you like, we will help you easily find new podcasts and episodes based on your interests, comment on them, and recommend them to your friends. And podcast creators will be able to reach and connect with new listeners — all directly within the Facebook app."
Along with adding podcasts to Facebook, there will also be a Live Audio Room on Facebook and Messenger. Facebook said it will start testing the Live Audio Rooms feature for it to be available to all by the summer.
Facebook also mentions that there will be opportunities for creators to monetize their work. The company stated, "When Live Audio Rooms launch, fans will be able to support their favorite creators and public figures through Stars or donate to causes they care about. Soon after launch, we’ll also offer other monetization models, like the ability to charge for access to a Live Audio Room through a single purchase or a subscription."