The world of podcasting is still booming, albeit quietly, but with a lot of power. This time it is Apple that continues to bet on this multimedia format by acquiring the Pop Up Archive podcast search venture.
Even though it dominates 55% of global podcast downloads, Apple still plays a major role in this medium. Reports indicate that Apple took over the small San Francisco company, Pop Up Archive, to improve its internal tools in this format.
However, the figures for the acquisition were not disclosed, nor was the official purpose of the acquisition. Although this behavior is not unusual for Apple, which has previously made use of small companies that are emerging in order to improve their home technologies. The profile of Pop Up Archive indicates that it was founded in 2012, and although relatively small, it has had its notoriety beyond the world of podcasts. In 2014, it was recognized as at the 500 Startups Day.
Perhaps Apple was attracted by the technology developed by Pop Up Archive, which allows tagging audios usually transcribed in textual data, that is, tags on the podcast content generated automatically from the audio that the user has uploaded.
This could be a big advantage for Apple, and its iTunes podcast search engine, which so far depends on the tags that users manually add to their audios. This is especially frustrating, since podcasts are usually very long, and some cover many topics – so tagging them can be confusing – not to mention searching that ocean of podcasts.
Ultimately, podcast users will benefit from contextual searches, just as other search engines are implementing but in visual content. For the moment we have to wait, but without a doubt the world of podcasts is getting bigger, and more interesting.