An introduction to podcasts for seniors


Are you a regular podcast listener? Or does your brain go into overdrive at the mere mention of the word? If you, like many millions of others, prefer to avoid what you don’t understand, you may be missing out on a brave new(ish) world of interesting, entertaining and engaging content that covers just about every topic you can imagine.

What is a podcast?

A blend of the words ‘iPod’ and ‘broadcast’, a podcast is a pre-recorded audio show available to listen to on the Internet. Podcasts can last anywhere between five minutes and one hour, with some of the most popular ones covering entertainment, current news, politics, history and sports.

How can you listen to them?

The easiest way to access podcasts is via the podcast app on your smartphone. If you’re an iPhone user, use the Apple Podcast app and browse by category (Education, News, Comedy, Society & Culture, Arts and Business) or explore tabs like Featured, New & Noteworthy and Top Shows. If you have an Android phone, you can listen to podcasts on Google Play Music – you won’t need a subscription to listen. If you’d like to take a look at other options, you can also try Stitcher, Spotify and Overcast.

Why listen to them?

They’re an excellent way to stay in touch with what’s happening globally in everything from arts and architecture to science and sports – and they’re wonderfully entertaining. In fact, 56% of South African consumers opt for podcasts that are entertainment based. And while we’re on the topic of statistics, here’s another really interesting one: podcast consumption in South African rose by an incredible 50% between 2017 to 2018 – that’s according to the South African Podcast Media Consumption Research Data, Trends & Analysis Report 2018. But the real beauty of these audio shows is that they can be listened to on-the-go, meaning you can enjoy them while gardening, taking Fido for a walk, or having a cup of tea on the patio.

Ready to give the wide world of podcasts a try? Here are three worth plugging into…

The Memory Palace
Host: Nate DiMeo
Frequency: Monthly
What you can expect: describes this podcast as “a series of vignettes about various objects, people and places throughout history” where host DiMeo “tells empathetic stories about his subjects and conjures dream-like settings with vivid descriptions and wistful commentary.”  

Host: Sarah Koenig
Frequency: Seasonal (Season three was released in September 2018)
What you can expect: A grittyinvestigative journalism podcast that investigates real-life crime starting in season one with the murder of high school student Hae Min Lee in Baltimore in 1999. According to Wikipedia, “As of September 2018, episodes of seasons one and two have been downloaded over 340 million times, establishing an ongoing podcast world record.”

Freakonomics Radio
Host: Stephen Dubner
Frequency: Weekly
What you can expect: Freakonomics Radio is a spin-off of the book Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything written by the podcast’s host, Stephen J. Dubner, and his regular guest, Steven Levitt in 2005. describes it as, “an award-winning podcast exploring “the hidden side of everything”. From the economy, headline news to pop culture.”

At Evergreen, we believe that technology has an important role to play in keeping residents connected to the world around them. To ensure this happens, all our homes and apartments are fibre-ready and free Wi-Fi is available in our Lifestyle Centres.