Apple has finally released the Apple Podcast App, which makes it easier to listen to free audio downloads on your iOS device. The Podcast App can be used on iPhones, iPods, and iPads, as long as you have iOS5 or later. With easy to use controls, the ability to subscribe to podcasts directly from your device, and the option to share, stream, or download to your media library, the Apple Podcast app is giving other podcasting apps like iCatcher and Downcast a run for their money.
In the past, podcast listeners had to either manually download individual podcasts in iTunes on their phone, tablet, or iPod, or continuously sync their device with their computer to keep up with the new podcasts coming in. The new Podcast app makes things much simpler.
When you open the app, a screen comes up with two buttons on the bottom that read Podcasts and Top Stations. If you click on the Top Stations button on the right, you can search for podcasts by category and name. You can tap on the podcasts to start streaming immediately from your phone, or click a button to subscribe and download episodes to your device. Once you have downloaded podcasts, you can click on the Podcasts button to manage your list.
One of the great things about this app is the control you have over your podcasts. You can drag the tiles into position so that your favorite podcasts are at the top of the list. In addition, you can subscribe to different podcasts and have them automatically delivered to your device. This means you never miss an episode. If you no longer want to receive episodes, you can choose to unsubscribe without losing the episodes that you already have. In addition, you can share your favorite podcasts using email, Twitter, or SMS.
While listening to an episode, you can tap on the cover of the podcast to pull up the control panel screen. There are easily recognizable VCR-like controls for pause, backwards, and forwards, as well as a timer bar. If you drag the red slider over the timer, you can play the episode from a particular time. In addition, the rabbit and turtle buttons allow you to speed up or slow down the podcast. Furthermore, the app allows you to jump 10 seconds back and 30 seconds forward.
Like other popular podcast apps such as Downcast and iCatcher, the Apple Podcast app does not require you to sync your device to your computer to get new podcasts. Unlike other apps, the Apple Podcast is free and uses a very simple interface, which makes it a snap to use. Although Downcast and iCatcher may have additional features that Podcast does not, many people find the extra options unnecessarily complex, and prefer the simplicity of the Podcast app.
If you are an avid podcast listener, you may find that the Podcast app makes your life a lot easier. The convenience of being able to download podcasts automatically to your device, and the ability to manage your lists the way you like are definite advantages. The best part is that the Apple Podcast app is free, so there is no risk to you for trying it out.