Andrew Whipple

The Protector and King of Chilladelphia

How To Pick A Podcast App

Published 03/27/2017

Podcasts can be hard to get into. Not only can it be hard to find the right a show you like, you also have to figure out how to listen to the dang things.

Well, if you have a smartphone, fortunately there's a whole ecosystem of great apps built to help you do just that! But then you run into another problem: which app do I pick?

This is where this handy-dandy series of questions should help you out. Go from top to bottom and stop when you hit something that applies. Keep in mind, this is all my own personal opinion, and very geared towards iPhones. But I listen to a lot of podcasts, so while I may not know much about most things, I do know a thing or two about podcasts and listening to 'em.

Do You Have An iPhone And Just Want To Use My Default Suggestion?

Use Overcast.

Do You Use An Android Phone?

Use Pocket Casts.

Do You Listen To An EGREGIOUS Amount Of Podcasts OR Like To Sample Episodes From Lots Of Different Shows?

Use Castro.

Do You Care About Maximum Customization Or Fiddly Features?

Use Downcast.

Do You Care About Having A Mac App?

Use Downcast.

Do You Care About Having An iPad App?

Use Pocket Casts, Downcast, or Overcast (aka not Castro.)

Do You Want To Try Listening To Podcasts On An Apple Watch?

Use Outcast or Workouts++

Do You Really Really Care About Being Able To Use Siri?

Use Apple's default Podcasts app.

Do You Really Want To Use Stitcher?

Fine.

Or How About Using Spotify For Podcasts?

I mean, I guess?

Did None Of The Above Apply?

Use Overcast.

Do You Want To See The Apps I've Downloaded At Some Point, But Wouldn't Pick Over Any Of Those As General Suggestions?

Use Anchor, NPR One, 'sodes, Castaway, Instacast (RIP!), Podwrangler, Podmower, Spreaker, Breaker, or ZCast.


And for those curious, my personal podcast app history (ignoring a few days/weeks spent here and there testing out the other apps on the list above) goes roughly:

  • Syncing podcasts through iTunes, which sucked, so as soon as it launched I switched to...
  • Apple Podcasts app, which was buggy, so I switched to...
  • Downcast, which started crashing and syncing broke, so on to....
  • Instacast, which was perfect, but went out of business, so over to....
  • Overcast, which started to buckle under 200+ subscriptions on an iPhone 6, so then....
  • Castro, which I loved, but once I got a newer, faster phone, it was time to return to....
  • Overcast, which I use today!

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