Create podcasts just for you with Pluggd
A weekly column profiling companies and personalities. This week: Pluggd.
What: Pluggd, a Seattle startup that combs the Web to find audio broadcasts, or podcasts, that users can download or listen to free.
Who: Alex Castro, chief executive officer.
Employees: Six full time, most working out of a Pioneer Square office.
How it works: Pluggd doesn't host the podcasts but enables people to find them and listen to them in one place, at pluggd.com. Users can bookmark shows for future reference or share them with others. Pluggd was founded in February and launched its Web site in June.
Doing time at Amazon: Castro and two other employees previously worked for Amazon.com. What stands out most about his experience there, Castro said, is Chief Executive Jeff Bezos' laserlike focus on improving the customer experience.
The 2.0 world: Castro said that the term "podcasting" is becoming obsolete, having been eclipsed by a bigger trend of radio and television programming moving to the Internet. It's also a confusing word, he said, leading some to think it only works with Apple Computer's iPod. Pluggd content is audio-only for now, but look for videos to be showing up soon.
Not YouTube: Pluggd isn't going to mimic YouTube as the place for funny home videos, Castro said. Instead, the company aims for programming similar to what you might find on TV — an episode on dog training, for example, or a preview of football games.
Advertising model: Makes money by selling ads. Castro promises more innovation on that front in coming months. The company plans to demonstrate some new features at the Demo conference in San Diego this month.
Sounds of opportunity: Castro said the $100 billion radio and TV ad market is undergoing a revolution. "It's moving to the Internet," he said. "We believe we're going to capture a big share of that."
— Kim Peterson