Top 10 World’s Most Popular Podcasts

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A podcast is a program that is made available online in digital form for download. For instance, a user could download an episodic collection of digital audio files to their device and listen to them whenever they choose. Although some shows include a second video element, most popular podcasts are predominantly audio formats. Streaming apps and podcasting services provide a convenient and integrated way to manage your personal consumption queue across multiple podcast sources and playback devices. There are also podcast search engines that help users find and share podcast episodes.

A podcast series typically features one or more recurring hosts engaged in a discussion of a specific topic or current event. Podcast discussions and content can range from carefully scripted to completely improvised. Podcasts combine sophisticated and artistic audio production with thematic topics ranging from scientific research to slice-of-life journalism. Many podcast series provide affiliate websites with links and show notes, guest biographies, transcripts, additional resources, commentary, and occasionally a community forum dedicated to discussing the show’s content.

Podcasting is the preparation and distribution of audio files using RSS feeds to the devices of logged-in users. A podcaster usually buys this service from a Popular podcast hosting company like SoundCloud or Libsyn. Hosting companies then distribute these audio files to streaming services such as Apple and Spotify, which users can listen to on their smartphones or digital music and media players such as the iPhone.

Some interesting statistics about the most popular podcasts

  • The average American listens to 13 hours of podcasts per month.
  • The podcast industry is worth over $1 billion.
  • There are over 2 million podcasts available.
  • The most popular podcast app is Apple Podcasts. However, Spotify is quickly gaining ground.
  • The most popular podcasting platform is Stitcher. However, there are many other platforms available, including Podbean, SoundCloud, and Anchor.
  • The average podcast episode is about 30 minutes long. However, there are podcasts of all lengths, from short, one-off episodes to long-form serialized shows.
  • The most popular podcasting device is the smartphone. However, more and more people are listening to podcasts on their computers, tablets, and smart speakers.

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The Power of Podcasting: Unveiling the 10 Most Popular Shows Globally

Millions of listeners regularly watch podcasts, which have become a significant form of entertainment and information sharing in recent years. From true crime to comedy, politics to self-improvement, podcasts cover a wide range of topics to satisfy a variety of interests. In this article, we’ll explore the 10 most popular podcasts around the world, delve into their topics, hosts, and why they’ve become so popular.

1. The Joe Rogan Experience

Hosted by: Joe Rogan
Running since: 2009
: Talk / Interviews
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Austin, Texas, USA
Owned and published by: Spotify Technology SA
Average listeners per episode (estimate):  11.0 million

In 2009, Joe Rogan launched The Joe Rogan Experience podcast, which became one of the most popular podcasts in the world. While the podcast is mostly male, anyone interested in 3-hour conversations about politics, UFOs, stand-up comedy, history, psychology, psychedelics, and any topic under the sun should check this out.

"The Joe Rogan Experience" Podcasts

Joe Rogan can be a bit of a controversial figure; he’s been in the news for all the wrong reasons, especially for hosting guests and spreading misinformation about COVID. Joe tends to be too outspoken, which leads him to host conspiracy theorists like Alex Jones from time to time.

However, Joe Rogan also hosted reliable scientific personalities like Dr. Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Professor Brian Cox, Steven Pinker, and Sir Roger Penrose. It shows that Joe will listen to anyone if they have something interesting to share. The podcast has around 11 million listeners per episode.

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2. The Daily

Hosted by: Michael Barbaro
Running since:
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: New York City, New York, USA
Owned and published by:
 The New York Times Company
Average listeners per episode (estimate):  1.8 million

Interested in listening to a podcast that dives deep into the latest and most relevant news? Then check out The Daily, the second most popular podcast in the world after the Joe Rogan Experience. Think of The Daily as the New York Times but in podcast form. Each episode lasts 25–45 minutes.

Hosted by Michael Barbaro, it features interviews with New York Times journalists who covered the day’s hottest stories. What adds value to the production and storytelling is the great music and relevant audio clips played throughout the podcast.

"The Daily" Podcasts

The podcast started in 2017 and covers domestic and international politics as well as major news events. As of 2020, it has 2 million downloads per episode.

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3. Stuff You Should Know

Hosted by: Charles Bryant and Josh Clark
Running since:
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Owned and published by:
 iHeartMedia, Inc.
Average listeners per episode (estimate): 1.2 million

Are you interested in the world and how things work in general? Then check out Stuff You Should Know, popularly known as SYSK (Stuff You Should Know) among fans. The podcast has over 1400 episodes. The episode titles alone make you want to grab your headphones and listen right away. Here are some examples: how police interrogation works, how money laundering works, and how schizophrenia works.

" Stuff You Should Know" Popular Podcasts

The show is based on science and truth. The producers wanted to make a show that would explain everything. Episodes are an hour long, and both hosts have great banter and relationships that make the podcast interesting to listen to.

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4. Pod Save America

Hosted by: Jon Favreau, Jon Lovett, and Thomas Vietor
Running since:
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Los Angeles, California, USA
Owned and published by:
 Crooked Media, Inc.
Average listeners per episode (estimate): 1.4 million

Those interested in a more left-leaning political podcast that discusses the political news of the week should give this podcast a listen. Three Obama staffers started the show after Donald Trump became president, and they focused the first episodes on Trump’s presidency. Big names interviewed on the show include Barack Obama, Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, and Joe Biden.

"Pod Save America" Podcasts

Pod Save America focuses mainly on American politics, but if you’re looking for international news, you can check out Pod Saves the World.

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5. Call her daddy

Hosted by: Alexandra Cooper
Running since:
Comedy & Sex/Relationship Advice
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: New York City, New York, USA
Owned and published by:
 Spotify Technology SA
Average listeners per episode (estimate):  3.0 million

Call Her Daddy is a sex-positive dating and relationship podcast popular with women. The content is explicit and engaging and features stories, sex tips, girl talk, and millennial culture. Nothing sums up the show better than this New York Post statement:

"Call her daddy" Popular Podcasts

“For both housemates (aside from Cooper’s former relationship with Mets pitcher Noah Syndergaard), virtually nothing is off-limits in their weekly show, which runs the gamut from sex acts like “Guck Gluck 9000” to listening to each other and putting it on from the next room. The content went from 12,000 to 2 million listeners in two months.”

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6. Office Ladies

Hosted by: Angela Kinsey & Jenna Fischer
Running since:
Behind the Scenes commentary on episodes of “The Office” (U.S. version)
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Los Angeles, California, USA
Owned and published by:
 Liberty Media
Average listeners per episode (estimate):  1.5 million

Miss the good old days of The Office and want to rekindle the nostalgia? Then check out Office Ladies, starring Jenny Fischer (Pam Beesly) and Angela Kinsey (Angela Martin). The two offer their commentary on episodes of The Office and answer questions from fans. Guests include The Office actors, producers, and writers, most notably Rainn Wilson.

" "OFFICE LADIES Most Popular Podcasts

The podcast has the same cheerful vibe as the TV show, and the hosts have great chemistry, teasing each other and sharing funny stories about their lives as well as filming the TV episodes. Each podcast starts with a quick recap of an episode of The Office, then proceeds with scene-by-scene analysis and fun facts about filming, props, and scripts.

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7. My Favorite Murder

Hosted by: Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark
Running since:
True crime
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Los Angeles, California, USA
Owned and published by:
 Exactly Right Media, Inc.
Average listeners per episode (estimate):  2.9 million

Want to be a Murderino? That’s what fans of the popular My Favorite Murder podcast call themselves. Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark not only talk about true crime but also tackle deeper issues in the genre, such as sexual abuse, mental health, women’s rights, and sex work. The two hosts also discuss their personal lives and struggles with mental health, addiction, and religion.

showing the image of "My Favorite Murder" Popular Podcasts

In 2020, the podcast had around 35 million monthly downloads. Episodes take-place every two weeks, and each show is approximately 60–120 minutes long.

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8. Crime Junkie

Hosted by: Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat
Running since:
True crime
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Indianapolis, Indiana, USA
Owned and published by:
 Audio Chuck LLC
Average listeners per episode (estimate): 5.9 million

Ashley Flowers and Brit Prawat host another true crime podcast called Crime Junkie. Every Monday, there is a new episode about a different crime. The presenters have a great vibe together, and listening to the show feels like you are listening to two friends discussing their favorite topic.

showing the image of "Crime Junkie"show

Crime Junkie discusses both solved and unsolved cases. Expect the usual true crime themes like murder, serial killers, and missing persons. Episodes can last from 30 minutes to an hour.

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9. The Ben Shapiro Show

Hosted by: Benjamin Shapiro
Running since:
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Boca Raton, Florida, USA
Owned and published by:
 Bentkey Ventures LLC
Average listeners per episode (estimate):  2.6 million

The Ben Shapiro Show is the best podcast on the opposite side of the political spectrum. Shapiro became famous after debating gun control with Piers Morgan. He is known for his fast-talking manner and is popular among conservative intellectuals. The show covers American political events, news, and culture from a conservative perspective.


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10. Morbid: A True Crime Podcast

Hosted by: Ashleigh Kelley and Alaina Urquhart
Running since:
True crime
Podcast language: English
Broadcast from: Boston, Massachusetts, USA
Owned and published by:
 Morbid: A True Crime Podcast LLC
Average listeners per episode (estimate):  1.1 million

Do you like true crime and horror stories? Then listen to Morbid: A True Crime Podcast, hosted by Alaina Urquhart, an autopsy technician, and Ashleigh “Ash” Kelley, a hairdresser.

showing the image of "Morbid: A True Crime Podcast"

Murder. Scary myths. Haunting history. Haunted places. This is what you can expect from the podcast. Do not worry; there’s also a healthy dose of humor present in the show, so it’s not all doom and gloom.

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FAQs on Popular Podcasts

Q. What are the most popular podcasts in the world?

The Joe Rogan Experience is the most popular podcast in the world, with over 11 million downloads per episode.

Q. What are the most popular podcast genres?

The most popular podcast genres include true crime, news, comedy, and self-help.

Q. How do I listen to podcasts?

There are many ways to listen to podcasts. You can listen on your computer, smartphone, or tablet. You can also listen through podcast apps like Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or Stitcher.

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Q. What are the benefits of listening to podcasts?

There are many benefits to listening to podcasts. Podcasts can be a great way to learn new things, stay informed about current events, and be entertained. They can also be a great way to connect with people who share your interests.

Q. What are the future trends in podcasting?

The podcast industry is growing rapidly, and there are many exciting trends on the horizon. One trend is the rise of audio dramas. Audio dramas are like podcasts, but they are more like traditional radio dramas. They are often serialized, and they can be very immersive. Another trend is the growth of podcasting platforms. Many new podcasting platforms are emerging, and this is making it easier for people to create and share their Popular Podcasts.


The podcasting landscape thrives on diversity, offering a captivating world of audio entertainment for every interest. From the gripping mysteries of true crime to the insightful interviews on interview podcasts, the top 10 most Popular Podcasts represent a microcosm of this vast library. Whether it’s the daily news updates that keep us informed or the hilarious banter of comedy podcasts that lighten our mood, these leaders in the industry captivate millions with their storytelling, production value, and ability to connect with listeners on a personal level. As podcasting evolves, it’s clear that listener engagement reigns supreme, with genres like true crime, daily news, and insightful interviews consistently ranking high. With emerging trends like fiction podcasts gaining traction, the future of audio entertainment promises endless possibilities for creators and listeners alike.

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