LONDON, May 8, 2018 - LOVE SPORT, the broadcaster that took club podcasters to radio, today announced a collaboration with XAPPmedia to make 10 shows available to fans through Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant and the respective Echo and Google Home smart speakers. It is the first known portfolio of podcasts to be made simultaneously available on both Alexa and Google Assistant in the UK.
This week, XAPP hosted a webinar on the topic of how radio can succeed on Alexa. Inside Radio listened in and highlighted a few key points from the 30-minute session in a recent article this week. One of the main takeaways was that while voice assistants and smart speakers have brought radio back into the home, they will also be coming to the automobile faster than you think.
Amazon’s Alexa is being adopted by car makers ranging from Ford and Toyota to BMW. Ford says 20 million cars will have Alexa access in 2018 and that is a good start. Those announcements show a trend, but new testing by Amazon may accelerate Alexa availability by introducing an Echo Dot model for cars.
XAPP has helped launch over 800 Amazon Alexa radio skills over the past 12 months. These launches range from big radio groups like Cumulus and Scripps to regional groups and single stations like Radio Dubuque and The Journey. On May 1st, XAPP will hold our first webinar discussing what we learned launching 800 radio stations on Alexa.
NPR revealed in an interview with MediaPost that its streaming listening through Amazon Alexa devices grew 242% between November and February. Alexa now accounts for 13.3% of all NPR’s live streaming, up from just 3.9% in late 2017. When listening on any device triples over a 3-4 month period, every general manager and program director is going to take note.
Westwood One, the largest radio network in the U.S., and the official network radio partner of the NCAA, has worked with Amazon and development partner XAPPmedia to offer Alexa and Westwood One consumers effortless access to Westwood One Sports’ exclusive live audio coverage and post-game recaps of the 2018 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship.
There is a new report by OC&C that reveals voice commerce reached nearly $2 billion in the U.S. in 2017. More surprising to some is that it is projected to reach $40 billion in the next five years. That is an 86% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). And, it's not just a U.S. phenomenon. In the U.K. voice shopping is expected to climb from just $200 million to $5 billion in that same period.
Many podcasters are surprised when their podcast shows up on Alexa, usually through a TuneIn integration. This is great until someone actually tries to listen - it is a totally broken user experience. That is what we set out to address with Voice Cast for Podcasters.