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Photo by Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Google has launched a new Google Podcasts app on Android, available globally in the Google Play Store, with the goal of driving adoption of podcasts among Android's two billion users worldwide.

Why it matters: It's experimenting with how its artificial intelligence features, like automatic subtitling and Google Translate, can help modernize podcasting and broaden audiences.

Between the lines: There's a revenue opportunity for Google in the audio space as well. Last month, Google also launched audio ads within DoubleClick Bid Manager.

About the app:

  • Google Podcasts will have more than two million podcasts at launch. The product will keep all podcasts in sync across all your Google products (from Assistant, Search to Home and Pixel), and will give users personalized recommendations for podcasts you might like.
  • In the coming months, Google says it will launch several AI-powered features within the app, including the ability to read along with your podcast (in multiple languages), proactive suggestions of content related to your podcast, and the ability to easily “see” what’s ahead in the episode you’re listening to.

Go deeper

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

First look: The LCV's $4M ad buy

A screenshot from a new League of Conservation Voters ad supporting Rep. Stephanie Murphy.

The League of Conservation Voters and Climate Power are aiming another $4 million worth of ads at centrist House Democrats, urging them to support the climate provisions in President Biden’s $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation package, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Progressive groups are trying to counter the onslaught of conservative money pouring into swing districts. Both sides are trying to define Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda and pressure lawmakers to support — or oppose — the legislation scheduled for a vote in the House this week.

2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Shutdown Plan B

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Senate will hold a futile vote Monday night — just 72 hours before a potential shutdown — on a House-passed bill to fund the government through Dec. 3 and raise the debt limit.

Why it matters: The bill is going to fail. Period. But then comes Plan B: A "clean" continuing resolution — stripped of language about raising the debt limit — that Democrats spent the past week preparing, Axios is told.

Glenn Youngkin's play: Forever- and Never-Trumpers

Glenn Youngkin in Harrisonburg, Virginia, on Friday. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Standing on a flatbed hitched to a John Deere tractor in red Rockingham County, Virginia, Glenn Youngkin decried California liberalism and bashed his rival, Terry McAuliffe. He also encouraged early voting. Two words he avoided: Donald Trump.

Driving the news: Youngkin, the Virginia Republican gubernatorial nominee, is mounting a serious challenge to McAuliffe — a former governor and veteran of Democratic politics. Axios caught up with him on Friday in Harrisonburg, Virginia.