Amazon sells free podcasts in an attempt to sell audible subscriptions. According to The Verge Charlie Harding, host of the Switched On Pop noticed his podcast was listed for $8.95. Now, finding something on sale on Amazon isn’t surprising, but podcasts are normally free.
According to Harding when he searched his podcast on Amazon he saw the $8.95 price tag. But alongside the price tag was a tag saying “limited deal” and a suggestion to buy an Audible subscription. The Audible subscription gives a special discount of $0.00.
Harding’s podcast details the making and meaning of music. Again it is already free via other podcast apps. In addition, it also recently became free via the Audible app. Audible is owned by Amazon. Podcasts became available in October on Audible and when it was Harding’s podcast was free.
For some odd reason, Amazon is selling a free podcast which is freely available via one of its services. Harding’s podcast isn’t the only example of this. The Vergecast is also listed at $8.95. Again though the option to sign up for Audible to get it free was available as well.
Now, the price tag of $8.95 only shows on Amazon’s website and not in the mobile app. In addition, you would only see this if you were logged into an Amazon account when you searched for a podcast. On the bright side though, if you did click on the podcast you would have the choice of where to play the podcast.
Amazon sells free podcasts. A bug could be the cause of this
You would have the option to play the podcast via Amazon Music or Audible, and then you could listen for free without a subscription.
As of Wednesday, January 6 the pricing had disappeared after The Verge reached out to Amazon. Amazon still has not given a response as of the time of this writing.
There is no information as to why Amazon shows the $8.95 price for the podcasts. Audible does not even have a price that costs $8.95. In August Audible introduced a $7.95 plan which is its lowest. This plan gives access to free podcasts as well as exclusive Audible programming.
With this in mind, it appears to just be a bug that caused the podcasts to be listed for $8.95. Despite this, it still looks pretty bad on Amazon’s part. Amazon has already been in trouble this year so hopefully, this is just an accident. When Amazon introduced podcasts it was a push to sell Audible subscriptions. Remember podcasts can be accessed freely via other podcast applications. So you don’t have to sign up for Audible unless you also want access to audiobooks.