This article describes approaches to content-based access to spoken audio with a qualitative and tutorial emphasis. We describe how the analysis, retrieval, and delivery phases contribute to making spoken audio content more accessible and outline outstanding research issues. We also discuss the main application domains and identify important issues for future developments. The structure of the article is based on the general system architecture for content-based access. Although the tasks within each processing stage may appear unconnected, the interdependencies and the sequence with which they take place vary.