Users will be able to download full seasons, and the Podcasts app
will know if a podcast is intended to be listened to in
chronological order — “start at the first episode!” — or if it’s
more timely, where the most recent episode is the most important.
I’m excited by these changes because, yes, some of my podcasts are
seasonal and are best consumed from the first episode onward. I’ll
be adjusting my own podcast feeds to take advantage of Apple’s
extensions as soon as it makes sense to do so.
The other big news out of today’s session is for podcasters (and
presumably for podcast advertisers): Apple is opening up
in-episode analytics of podcasts. For the most part, podcasters
only really know when an episode’s MP3 file is downloaded. Beyond
that, we can’t really tell if anyone listens to an episode, or how
long they listen — only the apps know for sure.
I’m optimistic about Apple leading the way on these analytics, because they have a deserved reputation for respecting users’ privacy and no motivation to do anything intrusive.