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Pocket Casts Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Lee Hamlet on October 7th, 2013
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: STYLISH AND USER-FRIENDLY
Browse, subscribe, and play podcasts in style with the feature-packed Pocket Casts.
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How To: Use Apple's Podcasts App and its New Stations Feature

Posted by Carter Dotson on March 25th, 2013

Want to listen to listen to the wealth of podcasts that are available on iTunes from anywhere you have an iOS device and an internet connection? Then download the Podcasts app from the App Store. Now, the app can be a bit convoluted to use, so this how to guide should make getting into the app much easier.

If this is your first time using it, the app will show a blank screen with a white square you can tap to go to the Podcasts Store. Otherwise, you can tap Store in the upper-left corner to go browse for podcasts on iTunes.

Use the tabs to find audio and video podcasts, find the most popular podcasts, or search for your favorite podcasts, like The Portable Podcast! You can download individual episodes or subscribe to the podcast, which will show the latest episodes in the app.

To return to the main screen, tap Library in the upper-right corner. From the main screen, tap on the podcast’s icon to open up the available episodes; it’s also possible to add old episodes to be displayed.

Tapping on an episode will start streaming it. It’s also possible to download episodes for offline listening by tapping the downward arrow next to it. As well, tapping the blue arrow will allow you to see an episode’s description, mark an episode as played or unplayed, or add it to an On-The-Go playlist.

When you play a podcast, there’s the standard music controls, along with 15 second skip buttons to easily re-listen to something or skip ahead. The 1x button adjusts playback speed to playback episodes faster or slower, if you wish. The center clock icon allows for a sleep timer to be set. The share arrow allows you to share the podcast via different built-in services.

When you call up the music control buttons from the multitasking bar, the forward and reverse buttons are replaced with the 15 second skip buttons.

The podcast’s settings page allows you to update the podcast with new content, adjust which episodes should be kept, and even enable automatic downloads.

Now, there’s a new “My Stations” feature which is built for the podcast-obsessed. This makes it possible to easily organize your podcasts by topic, or some other methodology. It also houses the On-The-Go playlist for making a quick playlist of podcasts to play back. To make your own custom station, tap the New Station button and name it. Then choose which podcasts you want to appear on the station. The station will show any episodes that have been added to your library, so to get podcast episodes to appear on your station, you need to add them from the individual podcast’s page.

You can choose the order for new episodes from each station to be played in by tapping Edit. Tapping Settings will call up a variety of settings for Play Order, which episodes to include, and the podcasts included in the station.

These tips should help you master Apple’s official Podcasts app for listening to your favorite podcasts from iTunes.

Podcasts Review

+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
By Kevin Stout on July 2nd, 2012
Our rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar ::
Apple has finally released a dedicated app for podcasts.
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Apple FINALLY Launches Dedicated Podcast Application

Posted by Blake Grundman on June 27th, 2012

Move over Downcast and Stitcher, there is a new podcasting sheriff in town!  After years of being relegated to an option buried in iTunes, Apple decided to get off their laurels and release their first ever podcast focused application.  Apple has never really be known for pushing the envelope, so it is no surprise that the rather obviously titled, Podcasts, attempts to take the existing iTunes podcast abilities and slightly enhance it.

The tool integrates several new features such as subscriptions with automatic downloads, syncing playlists across devices using iCloud, and more straightforward playback controls.  However, it is worth noting that several other applications on the platform have had these features for several years.  The biggest step forward is in the actual store for discovering new podcasts.  This will be a big step forward that will hopefully result in an even deeper public acceptance of the medium.  Apple may be quite a bit behind the podcasting curve, but at least they are making strides in the right direction.

So will you be abandoning your podcast app of choice in favor of Apple's offering?  Let us know what you think in the comments.

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Stitcher Radio Adds Personalized Recommendations for Listeners

Posted by Kevin Stout on June 25th, 2012
+ Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: MUSIC TO OUR EARS :: Read Review »

Stitcher Radio, the on-demand talk radio service, has just been updated with several new features. Back in April of last year, 148Apps' Blake Grundman called Stitcher Radio "music to our ears" and stated that "Stitcher may be the cure for the common podcast." Now the popular radio service will include some great new features including a personal recommendation service.

Users will create a Stitcher Smart Station to receive personalized recommendations out of the 10,000+ shows available on Stitcher. According to statistics taken from the app, average listeners discover five new shows within their first month of using the service. Stitcher Smart Station is an easy to use way to get recommendations for those new shows. The recommendations take into account the listeners' history, favorite shows, and thumbs ups.

Other features included in the new update are lock screen album art (like the Music app, listeners will see the shows cover art on the lockscreen), a sleep timer, and the ability to share shows over Twitter easier.

Stitcher Radio is a free app. With these new updates, Stitcher may be the ultimate replacement to traditional car radio.

Podcatcher Review

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Kyle Flanigan on August 10th, 2010
Our rating: starstarstarhalfstarblankstar :: LITTLE GEM
Podcatcher is a hidden gem, allowing you to stream podcasts and download them over 3G, even if the filesize exceeds 20MB.
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