You no longer have to live in the US to try Spotify's paid podcast subscriptions. Spotify and Anchor are rolling out Podcast Subscriptions to 33 new markets over the next week. A total of 29 markets have access as of today (November 17th), including the UK, Australia and Hong Kong. Listeners in Austria, Canada, France and Germany will have to wait until November 22nd.
The system remains the same. Podcasters can charge extra to unlock special or ad-free episodes, offer early access and otherwise offer perks to listeners willing to pay. Producers keep all the revenue aside from basic transaction fees until 2023, with Spotify taking a five percent cut afterward.
This was arguably overdue. Apple added paid subscriptions to its Podcasts app in May, and made them available in 170 countries and regions. Spotify was effectively handing customers to Apple in those areas where it didn't have a paid option. While it's not yet clear that these paid memberships represent a large revenue stream, Spotify might not have wanted to take any chances.