Apple’s Podcasts App Updated: Custom Stations & More

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Podcasts app

Apple’s Podcasts app for iPad and iPhone was updated yesterday, to Version 1.2. This is a fairly substantial update – with several nice new features and also a new look for the Now Playing screen. Or,as John Gruber puts it …

RIP skeuomorphic reel-to-reel tape deck.

Here’s the full list of changes in the update:

• Create custom stations of your favourite podcasts that update automatically with new episodes
• Choose whether your stations begin playing with the newest or oldest unplayed episode
• Your stations are stored in iCloud and kept up to date on all your devices
• Create an On-The-Go playlist with your own list of episodes
• Playlists synced from iTunes now appear in the Podcasts app
• The Now Playing view has been redesigned with easier-to-use playback controls
• Addressed an issue with resuming playback when returning to the app
• Additional performance and stability improvements

I haven’t been a big user of the Podcasts app. I prefer Instacast. For those of you who do use the Podcasts app a lot, what do you think of this update? And the new Now Playing screen?

Patrick Jordan

Founder and Editor in Chief of iPad Insight. Husband, father to a lovely daughter, Commander of the Armies of the North, dog lover (especially Labs), Austinite, former Londoner, IT consultant, huge sports nut, iPad and mobile tech blogger, mobile apps junkie.

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5 thoughts on “Apple’s Podcasts App Updated: Custom Stations & More”

  1. I have loved podcasts for years and the Apple Podcast app was so horribly broken that I switched to Instacast. It’s been nice and simple to use and I see little reason to go back. I’m glad that Apple is finally fixing this and hope it works well, especially the updated playback controls. The other big issue it had was file management. I really struggled to grab only the specific episodes that sounded interesting and then auto-delete them when done or un-delete ones I wanted to share with my wife or that I feel asleep while listening to (no fault of the podcast).

    I don’t like how Instacast comes out with a whole new app for every major version upgrade. I understand that is the Apple rules they have to live by, but it will make me at least check out Apple’s Podcast app again when Instacast v2.2.4 starts having bugs or doesn’t have the latest feature I want.

  2. I never had an issue with the old podcasts app. It downloaded my subscriptions and played them back to me on my commute. I’m not a power-podcast listener i guess, but follow quite a few and never had a problem. iif that is “broken” i must just not have realized how unhappy i was. a skeuomorphic tape deck animation that only showed on one screen didn’t bother me at all. Actually it was kind of cool. I feel like John gruber and others turned that into the target of their frustrations with the lack of other features they were looking for. Why anyone cares about his opinion is beyond me in the first place, but I digress. The new custom channels feature is great, but I notice I get a “failed to play” error rather frequently now when I never saw it before. New features and improments are always appreciated but it was never nearly as bad as people said.

  3. I too hate the new interface. Hate the ‘suggested’ stations (which I’m assuming paid them to recommend?). Is there any way I can delete the ‘upgrade’ and go back to the old version?

  4. The biggest bummer is the sleeptimer is gone. It was part of the spinning reels page but very useful if you listen to podcast at bedtime. I don’t want all 50 podcasts playing in a row or even a full one hour podcast playing through: 10-15 min is all I need. Also removed is the ability to scroll through the podcast episode. While it’s an obvious fix that they brought playlists I don’t know why Apple needed to kill these other great features.

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