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'Hot Priest' actor, TikTok are drawing Gen Z to this audio-erotica app

Jordan Hart   

'Hot Priest' actor, TikTok are drawing Gen Z to this audio-erotica app
  • Quinn is an audio-erotica app that Gen Z is loving right now.
  • CEO Caroline Spiegel founded Quinn in 2019 during her senior year at Stanford University.

The founder and CEO of Quinn, Caroline Spiegel, knows she's supplying a niche demand, but she likes it that way.

And it's working. Quinn, an app that lets subscribers listen to scripted erotic scenarios, is seeing listeners tune in for about 24 million minutes every month.

"It sort of takes the best elements of romance novels and condenses it into a 15 or 20-minute audio experience," Spiegel said.

Quinn is a hit with Gen Z. According to metrics, about 56% of its user base are adults between the ages of 18 and 24. Its popularity on TikTok — also the home of BookTok, which has been instrumental in fueling a boom in "romantasy" fiction, which usually features a lot of "spice," or erotic scenes — may have something to do with that. Many of the categories listed on its website match "tropes" regularly seen in romance novels, such as "enemies to friends" or "co-workers."

Subscribers pay $4.99 a month or $47.99 annually to have access to erotic audio clips from voice actors. Quinn says its revenue has grown 440% year over year for the past two years.

Celebrity collaborations no doubt also help.

One specific corner of the internet went feral in May when they found out actor Andrew Scott would voice a series for Quinn. The "Fleabag" star has already got an admiring fan base after his role as the so-called "hot priest" in the series, and as of Wednesday, the official account where the announcement was posted has more than 460,000 followers.


Replying to @Lorel Rea Now introducing… Andrew Scott as Robb the Protector. The Queen’s Guard, a Quinn Original series, hits the Quinn app on May 16, 2024.

♬ original sound - Quinn

"I've never downloaded an app this quickly in my life," one of the top comments on Scott's video for Quinn reads.

Audio clips on Quinn offer something for everyone's taste. Scott, for example, is the voice of "The Queen's Guard," a historical fantasy with some explicit scenes.

Spiegel, the younger sister of the Snap cofounder Evan Spiegel, said she began working on Quinn in 2019 while recovering from an eating disorder and experiencing sexual dysfunction (an issue that often isn't addressed in women).

"I felt like the way that I experienced desire wasn't really reflected in the options that were out there," she told Business Insider.

Spiegel found solace in audio erotica on Reddit and Tumblr and wanted to bring the unique format to the masses, so she dropped out of Stanford University and launched Quinn in 2021, Forbes reported.

Today, women make up 77% of Quinn's entire base.

Quinn could be compared to OnlyFans, albeit without visuals, in that it's a platform for creators to get their content in front of a paying audience. But according to Spiegel, it's more like Peloton in that its creators are sort of like the fitness company's instructors, and "people have their favorites that they go really hard for."

To become a Quinn creator, applicants can answer a brief questionnaire and submit an audio recording sample similar to those already on the app.

Quinn's other original celebrity collaborations — including the "You" actor Victoria Pedretti and Jesse Williams from "Grey's Anatomy" — have clearly appealed to Gen Z, and Spiegel teased that there were at least two more big names coming to the app in 2024.

"I feel like the biggest clue is that one is a woman and one's a man," she said.

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