Francesco, thanks for your comment — smart home speakers are definitely one frontier to look at, but as you said — in US they are growing fast, over here we do not have enough or have no data.
First of all, the speakers are not and (for some time I think) will not be universal, Amazon support 4 languages, Google Home supports 5 languages. But podcast apps are universal, that's why I was focusing on apps.
It was not known at the time of my writing this blog, but actually Spotify is the number 2 podcast platform globally, it has a lot to do to catch up and provide at least a decent service for podcast producers. But with 150 mil. global users it is definitely a player we should be looking at in the future.
In fact I pushed our daily news podcast to the platform and many of the feedback we got was that Spotify is a much more obvious choice for podcast listening for those who did not listen to them before. Just because they already used the app. That's why the idea of a native Android app is so important I think.
Anyway, have you read this series about Google's plans to revolutionise podcasts within Google search? It has already begun, I am curious to see how it goes: https://blog.pacific-content.com/exclusive-inside-the-new-google-podcasts-strategy-that-could-double-audiences-worldwide-b556cdc26e43