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Podtrac Says iHeart Remained Top Publisher In April; Total Downloads Up 31% From Year Ago.

Ten of the top 20 publishers measured by Podtrac had an increase in their unique media audience numbers during April, while overall, it says its roster of publishers enjoyed another month of double-digit gains in their unique audience compared to a year ago. In what has become its usual perch at the top, iHeartRadio remained the largest publisher with more than 441 million downloads and streams and a unique U.S. audience of 31 million during April as iHeart’s total number of shows rose to 632 versus 600 in March.

The number of podcasts measured for NPR held steady at 49 as it also sits in its now-familiar second place position. Podtrac says NPR had more than 165 million downloads and 20 million unique listeners in the U.S.

The top five publishers were the same in April as in March. Podtrac reports Wondery was again in third place as its unique listener tally jumped six percent to nearly 14 million with downloads of 93 million. At No. 4, the New York Times had 121 million downloads and 11 million unique listeners. NBC News rounded out the top five with an eight percent jump in its unique listeners and streams totaling 61 million.

The Walt Disney Company, whose podcasts include the ABC Audio and ESPN Audio portfolios, remained at No. 6 but there was a bit of movement in the second half of the top ten as No. 7 PodcastOne and No. 8 Daily Wire traded spots from a month earlier. Barstool Sports remained in ninth place, while PRX once again rounded out the top ten -- each in the same position they held in both February and March.

The podcasts from TED also made a return to the ranker during April while Kast Media, which had been No. 14 in March, fell outside the top 20 in April. And This American Life continue to be the outperformer on the list of publishers. Despite having just a single show, it moved up two slots to No. 17 in April with more than 11 million downloads and nearly four million unique listeners in the U.S.

Overall, Podtrac reports the average publisher had a two percent month-over-month decrease in their U.S. unique monthly audience last month. But compared to a year earlier, April 2022’s unique reach for the top 20 publishers was up 16% versus April 2021.

Podtrac also reports 10 of the top 20 publishers posted an increase in their unique monthly U.S. audience in April compared to March – the rest were either down or flat.

In terms of downloads, Podtrac says global downloads for the top 20 publishers overall were down five percent month-over-month during April. But they grew 31% compared to the download numbers from a year earlier.

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