Google Podcasts, the company’s lackluster audio app, has added another feature that brings it closer to competing with the market’s existing dominant products. Users have recently noticed the arrival of a new ‘Recommended’ tab that shows users personalized content recommendations based on their past listening habits. Users can directly access and play specific episode recommendations from this new tab.
The Google Podcasts app is only available for Android, offering audio fans who want to stay within Google’s ecosystem an option that, in most ways, fails to compete with other existing solutions. The podcast market is packed full of both audio shows and mobile apps, making it hard for newcomers in either category to lure in their own users.
The app launched in June 2018 and was heavily criticized at the time over the complete lack of basic critical features. Google has slowly corrected that issue in the months since by rolling out various big and small features; in its present form, the Google Podcasts app has enough features to meet the basic needs of the average podcast user.
As first noticed by Android Police, the app also now features a Recommended tab with personalized podcast episode recommendations. This marks a big turning point for the app, expanding beyond the basic functions that make a podcast app useable and crossing over into more advanced offerings that tap existing user data to improve the overall experience.
The quality of the recommendations remains to be seen. The app is suggesting individual episodes rather than shows, meaning the episode topic is the source of the recommendation, not the show itself. This may be a good way to discover new interesting content, but it may not be terribly effective at finding new shows that match your interests.