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Spotify shakes up its top podcast rankings in the US

The revamped charts for the top podcasts and most-popular single episodes in the US are meant to give up-and-comers a better chance of moving up the ranks.

Angela Lang/CNET

Spotify is revamping how it ranks the most popular podcast programming on its service, tweaking how it calculates both top podcasts and top episodes in ways that may give up-and-comers more of a chance to move up the charts when their popularity spikes. 

Spotify already had charts for top podcasts and trending podcasts, but the new rankings refine and expand them, the company said. 

Its new Top Podcast chart tweaks the data points that play into a title's ranking to balance which ones are big and which ones may be smaller but are spiking in popularity; the chart is now based on the number of podcast followers on Spotify and how many unique Spotify users have listened to a podcast in the last 24 hours. 

And its new Top Episodes chart looks beyond a show's numbers for the first time to zero in on individual episodes, which may include installments that are trending even if the podcast as a whole isn't a behemoth like Joe Rogan or Crime Junkies. 

Both charts are updated daily.

Spotify also launched a charts website, so these rankings are viewable to anyone on the web. 

Spotify as a company has been on a podcasting binge in the last three years. Having grown to the biggest music-streaming service worldwide, it targeted its next stage of growth in podcasts -- an area that Apple so dominates that the name of the format originally derived from Apple's iPod. But Spotify's pursuit to becoming a top destination for non-music audio has helped it continue to expand, most recently reporting more than 345 million listeners globally.

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