There’s no shortage of options for listening to the latest episodes of your favourite podcast in iOS. Every single iOS device offers Apple Podcasts. While it’s a useful app, however, it’s not necessarily the best. Users have numerous third-party options on iOS. Here are some of the most popular podcast apps to choose from.
We’ll be assessing:
- Additional features
- Playlist support
- Audio playback options
- Overall app design
We’ll start with this one, if only as a starting point from which to compare the others. In terms of usage, it’s no surprise that it’s the most popular podcast app on smartphones. It’s got some great features, too. It’s built into every single iOS device, it has a native Apple TV app, and works on MacOS. It also does a good job of recommending new shows. The design works well with the iOS. It’s also great when it comes to synching, with new episodes showing within seconds of loading the app. Audio playback can be at either 1.5x or 2x. If you only listen to a few episodes, Apple Podcasts is a safe one to stick with.
One key feature missing from Apple Podcasts is a social aspect. That’s where Breaker excels as you can follow your friends and find out what they’re listening to, which shows that they favourite, and any new shows they’ve subscribed to. You can also see comments your friends leave on shows that they’re listening to. It features a stunning overall design, and in terms of playback, it offers 3x speed with an option to “skip silences” that speeds up the show.
CastBox provides its podcast app via Contentbox. The app’s overall design is impressive. Contentbox is an infrastructure based on the blockchain and was designed for the digital content industry. It appears as though, from one industry to the next, the blockchain is slowly changing the world. While there is still much to be done before it’s widely accepted in the mainstream, real products are starting to be offered, such as a number of enterprise services being rolled out by tech giants like IBM and Microsoft. Now it seems that it’s having an impact on the podcasting industry, too.
Overcast has been available since 2013 and is one of the more popular options in the tech-podcast community. The design offers a pleasant balance between unique and contemporary iOS design standards. The default colour scene is unobtrusive and light, and the primary navigation includes a list of your subscriptions, your playlists, and buttons that enable you to further manage your playlists and subscriptions. When it comes to playing at higher speeds, the problem with 1.5x and 2x is that it can come with distortion. Overcast’s Smart Speed provides a happy medium.
When it comes to apps, it’s all about opinion. If you only listen to a small number of shows, Apple Podcasts will serve you just fine. If you enjoy social features, such as friend feed, comments etc., Breaker would be a good option for you. If you’re something of a podcast addict, Overcast is a great choice. It’s updated frequently and the developer has long supported the open podcast ecosystem.