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Podcast Measurement Technical Guidelines

Last updated: February 22, 2024

Released for Public Comment: Version 2.2

On February 22, 2024, The Podcast Technical Working Group released version 2.2 of the Podcast Technical Measurement Guidelines! The Guidelines will be available for public comment until March 23, 2024. Please review and submit your feedback to

Podcast Technical Measurement Guidelines

In February 2021, the Podcast Technical Working Group finalized version 2.1 of the Podcast Measurement Technical Guidelines. Several new items have been incorporated into the guidelines, including:

  • A new detailed recommendation for calculating IPv6 metrics, which recommends truncating IPv6 addresses to the first 64 bits prior to calculating unique Listener and Download metrics using a combination User Agent and IP address.
  • A new section with guidance on user agent structure
  • Filtering guidance for Apple watchOS user agents
  • Language edits such as typo corrections and replacement of whitelist/blacklist terminology
  • Updated data for the Podcast Player Market Share section
  • And a number of additional podcast player recommendation

About Podcast Measurement

Podcasting remains a rapidly growing industry, with ad revenues ballooning over the last few years to reach a projected estimate of nearly $1 billion in the US for 2020 (14% y/y growth), according to the IAB Podcast Advertising Revenue Study conducted by PwC. And that’s despite softened projections tied to impacts from COVID-19 which had previous estimates expected to reach 29% year-over-year growth.

In 2019 annual podcast revenue estimates reached $708 million with a whopping 48% increase over reported revenues from the previous year. Podcast listeners are highly engaged and growing as a whole which makes them an appealing target for marketers. However, historically a number of challenges have endured in getting a commonly agreed-upon set of metrics in the podcasting space. This is in part due to the lack of access to client side measurement, but also largely due to podcasting being a relatively new space that has been innovating over the past few years.

The IAB Podcast Measurement Technical Guidelines 2.1 are the result of the Podcast Technical Working Group’s efforts to provide clarity in the marketplace by developing a common language around measurement. The focus of this document is on server side measurement (but will be extended to client side measurement once the client side opens up). In addition to defining standard metrics for both podcast content and podcast ads, this document also provides guidance on some of the technical details such as request filtering, in order to reduce the discrepancies currently seen across podcast publishers and tech vendors. 

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