Charlie Harding, the host of the podcast Switched On Pop, observed one thing unusual when he searched his podcast name on Amazon yesterday: a price ticket. An $8.95 value, to be precise, marked as a “restricted deal” with the suggestion to purchase an Audible subscription to get a reduction.
Harding’s present, which particulars the making and which means of in style music, is already freely out there in all podcast apps by an RSS feed. It additionally not too long ago turned out there at no cost inside Audible, which is owned by Amazon, when podcasts have been added to its app in October. However for some purpose, Amazon had began promoting the present as paid content material. Much more unusually, the Audible promotion was actually for a value hike, marking the present as initially costing $0 and being marked as much as $8.95.
The identical occurred with different podcasts out there in Audible, too. All those we checked, together with The Verge’s personal Vergecast, which is freely distributed by RSS, have been listed as costing $8.95 and promoted an Audible membership deal. These outcomes solely confirmed up on Amazon’s web site, not within the cell app, and provided that you have been logged into an Amazon account whenever you searched. Should you clicked on the podcast, you’d then be capable of choose the place you wished to hear, both Amazon Music or Audible, and you might hear at no cost with out a subscription.
The pricing disappeared Wednesday morning after The Verge reached out for remark. Amazon has not but responded.
It’s unclear why Amazon marked the reveals as costing $8.95 provided that none of Audible’s subscription tiers are that value. Its lowest tier, which it launched in August, prices $7.95 for entry to those free reveals, in addition to unique Audible programming and audiobooks. The worth goes as much as $14.95 for a subscription that features audiobook credit. This appears greater than prone to be a bug provided that the reveals’ costs have been raised as a substitute of lowered as a part of this “restricted deal,” however nonetheless, it’s not an excellent search for Amazon, which only in the near past began specializing in podcasts.
The addition of podcasts is a part of Audible’s newest push to promote subscriptions. The freely out there reveals add worth to a expensive subscription and bulk up its catalog, which could entice individuals to pay each month for entry. It’s value remembering, although, that almost all podcasts can be found at no cost by RSS, not whenever you pay Audible.