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Podcast downloads are down (again) thanks to iOS 17

Apple Podcasts logo illustration
Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

Apologies for sounding like a broken record, but the numbers are down again. This time by a lot, although that is not unusual for the end of the year. Podtrac reports that, among the top 20 publishers, downloads fell 19 percent month over month and down 24 percent year over year. The report states that the drop is “due largely to modified download behavior by iOS 17 as it continues to be adopted by podcast listeners.”

In September, Apple introduced iOS 17, which included a small change that has had a big impact on downloads. It used to be that if you subscribed to a show, forgot about it for a while, and then returned, all of the intervening episodes would download automatically. But iOS 17 has made it so downloads pick up where you left…

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