We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Audio and music software Reviews
15,669 Reviews

Pocket Casts review: the best podcatcher app for Android

£2.70 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Shifty Jelly

Our Rating: We rate this 4.5 out of 5

Pocket Cases is the best podcatcher for Android devices. Here's our Pocket Casts review.

Pocket Casts

Smartphone apps are the perfect medium to manage your podcast library and take it with you--anywhere your ears go, your favourite podcasts can follow. Pocket Casts (£2.70) is the best podcatcher for your Android smartphone or Android tabletSee also: Best Android apps.

Pocket Casts: Style is substance

Pocket Casts' flat design and clutter-free navigation allows for an intuitive user experience. All your favourite podcasts are stored in one easy-to-peruse magazine-style library (as you can see to the left). One nit-pick: There is no "list view" layout option in the initial window (I'm a fan of list views), but once you click a podcast icon, the app will present you with a list view of available episodes.

Tap on an individual episode to prompt a pop-up with a brief episode description and the option to stream or download. (The app charitably has an auto-delete function that will delete episodes after they've been played - the lack of an auto-cleanup in other apps has caused me grief in the past.)

Once inside an episode, you can readily skip around on the timeline or simply push a button to skip ahead 30 seconds if you're bored, or backpedal 10 seconds if you missed something. Easy.

The app boasts a simple discovery function to find new podcasts by network, genre, or staff picks. Additionally, it's simple to find and subscribe to the podcasts you already knew you liked.

Pocket Casts: Playlists are for playas

Playlists are a must-have for long car rides or those times in your life when you want to remain hands-free over a long period of time. Creating and managing playlists in Pocket Casts' minimalist interface is a simple endeavour.

You can add episodes to manually curated playlists with a simple tap. Additionally, you can create "smart playlists" that will automatically separate podcasts into a group (such as sports, comedy, tech, and so on), which you can download/stream manually on a per-episode basis. Alternately, you can set it up to auto-download as episodes become available (wisely, Pocket Casts has included an option to only auto-download when connected to Wi-Fi).

Personally, I'm not a big consumer of video podcasts, but Pocket Casts seemed to handle video content just fine and allowed for the same navigation and playlist management as my audio podcasts.

If there was one thing missing from Pocket Casts, it would be a lack of a Web interface. The best apps anticipate that we travel between multiple screens throughout the day. I would love the ability to explore new podcasts, manage playlists, or download episodes directly from a website and have it sync with my phone. To be fair, few podcatchers offer this functionality with the exception of the no-longer-supported Google Listen, which would sync with a folder in the moribund Google Reader. See also: Best Android apps.

Pocket Casts Expert Verdict »

Android phone or tablet
  • Overall: We give this item 9 of 10 overall

Many consumers have a mental block against paying for apps, which is unfortunate as it encourages better software. Yes, there are plenty of free podcatching options out there, but for my four dollars, the ability to interact with a quality (and ad-free) app that you will literally spend hours with is well worth the investment.

  • Podcasts 1.2 app for iPhone & iPad review - Podcasts app is the one Apple should have shipped

    Podcasts 1.2 app for iPhone & iPad - Podcasts app is the one Apple should have shipped

    Apple's updated Podcasts app is now fit for purpose, allowing syncing between devices and working in a much slicker way. Here's our Podcasts 1.2 review.

  • Apple iPhone 2.1 software review

    Apple iPhone 2.1 software

    Apple promised us that the iPhone 2.1 update would save us all from the iPhone 2.0's sins, but as it turns out, the software brings with it more than just bug fixes.

  • Vevo Android app review

    Vevo Android app

    Free android app for watching music videos on your tablet PC.

  • SlapDash Podcasts review

    SlapDash Podcasts

    SlapDash Podcasts is a Windows 8 app that presents podcasts as an attractive and appealing package. Read our SlapDash Podcasts Windows 8 app review to find out more.

  • Apple iTunes TV review

    Apple iTunes TV

    Leaving aside all the music you can buy from the iTunes Store, an increasing amount of TV content can be accessed from this entertainment portal.


IDG UK Sites

Best Black Friday 2014 tech deals UK: Get bargains on phones, tablets, laptops and more this Black...

IDG UK Sites

Tomorrow's World today (or next year)

IDG UK Sites

25 iOS apps turn (Red) for World AIDS Day campaign

IDG UK Sites

Advanced tips for Mac OS X Yosemite: use Yosemite like an expert - 5 new tips added