There are many applications to listen to podcasts. Google has its own, Apple has its own and even Spotify allows you to listen to podcasts in its application, but one of the best known is Pocket Casts. Even being paid, Pocket Casts accumulated thousands and thousands of downloads, but since it became free, it has become one of the best alternatives for lovers of this format.
In this article, we will know the application thoroughly, so that we can harness its full potential and handle all the adjustments. Note that there is a monthly subscription (Pocket Casts Plus) that offers features such as a web client or a desktop app, but it is not necessary to use the smartphone app. Still, we’ll talk about it and describe everything it brings to subscribers.
A review of the interface
Pocket Casts is a very simple app, although it should be noted that it is not translated into Spanish. It’s only in English, although it is not complicated to use it. It consists of four tabs arranged in the lower area, namely:
Podcasts: a list of all the programs you are subscribed to.
Filters: some filters that allow you to better organize the episodes.
Discover: the section to search for programs.
Profile: your profile, with statistics, downloads, files, favorites and a history.
Before you start using Pocket Casts en it is recommended to create an account. That way, if we change devices or move from iOS to Android, all our programs and data will be synchronized and will be right where we left them. To do this, go to « Profile »> « Set Up Account »> « Create Account »> Choose « Regular » and enter an email and the password you want.
With the account already created, the first step is search our podcasts. To do this, we go to « Discover » and we write the name of the program. Another option is to browse the different categories that it offers us, the « Trending » or the « Popular in XXX » section, where XXX is our country. It detects it automatically, so if the podcasts you are looking for is popular in your country, you will surely find it there.
When you locate it, click on your file and then on « Subscribe ». It will automatically subscribe you to the show and move to the « Podcasts » section. Within the tabs of each podcast you can do several things by clicking on the settings wheel, such as get notified when there is a new episode, download the new ones or add them to the play queue automatically and even skip the first XX seconds of each episode (in case you have a too long intro).
This is the basic, the simple, enough for users who just want to listen to podcasts and voila, but you can do more.
Taking advantage of playback options and filters
To play an episode, just go to « Podcasts », select a program and choose the one you want. Another option is to enter « Filters », select « New releases » and choose the last one. Both accesses lead to the same thing. When you click on an episode, its tab will appear with a description, the option to download it, add it to the queue, mark it as played or archive it. You can also mark it as a favorite by clicking on the star in the upper right area.
Click on « Play » to start playing the episode. You will see that a new interface will appear with the buttons « Play », « -10 seconds » and « +30 seconds » (both modifiable from the settings) and five options that serve for the following. From left to right:
Playback Effects: to change the speed (up to three times faster), trim silences (this is done automatically by the app and basically skips the podcast chunks where the announcer is not speaking) and increase the volume of the chapters.
Timer: If you are one of those who fall asleep listening to podcasts, this is yours. You can put a timer of 5, 10, 30 or 60 minutes, until the episode ends or custom.
Star: to mark it as a favorite.
Share: well, that, to share the episode on any channel or social network.
Another interesting detail is that in the « Podcasts » tab, if you click on the three dots in the upper right, you can set « Badges » (little red dots that tell you when there are new episodes), change the size of the grid, order them and, something very curious, share them in batches.
If you click on « Share », you can create a list with the podcats you want and send them to anyone for you to subscribe. It is very useful for those people who have just started in the world of podcasts and ask you for recommendations. You just make a list, send it to them and that’s it.
In the « Filters » section, you can create your own filters (forgive the redundancy), and that can be useful for, for example, grouping podcasts by thematic blocks. It may seem complicated, but it is very simple. Let’s set one up so you can see how it works.
The first thing is to go to « Filters » and press « + ». Choose an icon, a color and give it a name, in our case « Technology », and then click on « Create filter ». You will see that all the episodes that are available will appear, but what interests us is the category « All your podcasts » that appears top left. Click on it and uncheck the « All your podscasts » box to be able to select manually.
Now you simply must click on the programs you want to add to the filter and click on « Save filter ». It will be saved automatically and displayed in the « Filters » section. If you click on it, you will see all the episodes ordered from most recent to oldest of all the programs you have selected. You can create as many as you want: news, technology, humor, to sleep, to run … Feel free.
Last but not least, by going to « Profile » and clicking on the settings wheel you can change the topic (in case you want it white or with a purer black), change the icon of the app, modify the folder in which the downloaded podcasts are saved and import and export an OPML file.
Also, in the « Files » section of « Profile » you can add your own audio files and listen to them from the app. Do you have a friend who just told you something in a 20 minute voice memo? Well, you add it to Pocket Casts and play it there (in fact, it might be a good opportunity to take advantage of the player’s accelerator and put it at x3 speed).
Pocket Casts Plus, a subscription for true enthusiasts
As you can see, the application for smartphones is really complete and more than enough for basic and advanced users. But if you still want more, you can choose to pay the subscription to Pocket Casts Plus (just over one euro per month or 10.99 euros per year). We are not going to dwell on it too much, but we will review what it offers:
Desktop application and web version. As everything works with the same account, all your content will be available on your computer and mobile.
Cloud storage, to upload up to 10 GB of files and access them from anywhere.
Plus themes and icons for the app.
Worth? It depends on how you usually listen to podcasts. If you are one of those who prefer to have everything on your computer or you watch podcasts while you work, the same can be interesting. Except for a few use cases, the most normal thing would be for you to have plenty with the mobile app.
Download Pocket Casts on Android and iOS
If you liked what Pocket Casts offers and want to give it a try, you will be interested to know that it can be downloaded in a totally free, no ads and no micropayments of any kind from Google Play and App Store. It may not be in Spanish, but saving that detail, it is one of the most complete apps that you can use if you are a fan of podcasting. You have the links in the tab under these lines.
Developer: Podcast Media Price: Free Download it at: Google play Download it at: App Store Category: News and magazines