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Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Spotify on Monday announced a slew of new tools to help podcast creators on its platform develop more interactive shows.

Why it matters: Spotify believes podcasts will help drive long-term user attention and growth for the company, which today is still primarily used to stream music.

Details: Spotify's new podcast partnerships and tools are designed to make it easier for people to produce more engaging podcasts.

  1. The company is partnering with WordPress to turn written content directly into podcasts via its podcast creator platform Anchor.
  2. In the coming months, Anchor will enable more creators to add videos to their podcasts. This functionality is currently available to music artists.
  3. Spotify is also launching interactivity tools like polls and Q&A features for podcasters using Anchor.

The company also announced that it will be launching a new "hi-fi" (high fidelity) subscription option later this year for users who want to experience the highest-quality audio available, especially for music.

What's next: Moving forward, Spotify says it's building and scaling a new podcast discovery experience that can craft podcast recommendation lists based on a listener's taste in music.

Go deeper: Spotify has tripled number of podcasts in past year to 2.2 million

Go deeper

$1.2 trillion "hard" infrastructure bill clears major procedural vote in Senate

Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

The Senate voted 67-32 on Wednesday to advance the bipartisan $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill.

Why it matters: After weeks of negotiating, portions of the bill remain unwritten, but the Senate can now start debating the legislation to resolve outstanding issues.

Fed chair says he isn't concerned by Delta surge

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell at the G20 finance ministers and central bankers meeting in Venice last month. Photo: Andreas Solaro/AFP via Getty Images

One of the country's most influential economic officials doesn't anticipate that surging coronavirus cases will knock the reopening recovery off course.

What he's saying: "There has tended to be less economic implications from each [coronavirus] wave. We'll see if that's the case for the Delta variety," Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell told reporters today.

Updated 3 hours ago - Economy & Business

Ubisoft workers demand company accountability in open letter

Photo: Frederic Brown / Getty Images

Close to 500 current and former employees of “Assassin’s Creed” publisher Ubisoft are standing in solidarity with protesting game developers at Activision Blizzard with a letter that criticizes their company's handling of sexual misconduct.

Why it matters: Ubisoft and Activision Blizzard workers are framing the actions as part of a bigger movement meant to have lasting change in the industry and its culture.