Thursday, September 27, 2007

Closing of Yahoo's Podcast Directory Is Sign Of Podcast Industry Maturity

I am not surprised Yahoo has decided to close down its podcast directory site on Oct 31,2007. It jumped on a hot trend and did not have a long-term vision. Yahoo just has to many businesses to focus on and this one just did not work for them.

I just think that any podcast directory needs to be directly linked up with an easy to subscribe process and use a portable media player or mobile smart phone player to be successful. Listeners and directories need to have a one-click to subscribe and listen process. This explains the success of iTunes + iPod solution. Any other successful platform needs to have the same equation and Yahoo just did not have this connection to a portable or mobile phone player. I do think that topic segmented web-based podcast directories can be successful, but will need to eventually be merged with a simple one-button to subscribe and listen platform for them to have long-term success. I think we will see a few more directories close down or merge with other companies.

For podcasting to reach mass adoption they need to be easily subscribed to, downloaded or streamed to a internet connected media player (iPod, Zune, iRiver), car media player, TV set-top box, gaming console and mobile phone. I saw with Mobilcast that given the option - people choose 90% of the time to on-demand stream podcasts from an internet server to mobile wireless connected phone player devices. We already see streaming on TIVO with audio podcasts and most video (TIVOCasts) podcasts downloaded, but audio will most often be streamed to player devices.

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