Podcasts have slowly turned into one of the most popular types of media and entertainment around the world. While in the old days the radio had your attention while on the road or at home, an increasing number of interesting shows and personalities have brought podcasting to the forefront of audio entertainment. However, despite the booming popularity of the medium, listening and keeping up with your favorite podcasts isn’t always that easy. Sure, there are plenty of apps out there that let you subscribe and listen to podcasts, but what about more in-depth features, like managing your subscriptions, playback settings or downloaded episodes? Today, we’ll be showing you an app that does just that!
We have mentioned and recommended a few podcast apps in the past, including the popular Pocket Casts. However, the issue with podcast apps on Android seems to be the lack of comparable free alternatives. While you can find really great podcast apps out there if you’re willing to make a purchase, the free versions often lack core features, have restrictions or issues with playback and downloads, or end up having an incomprehensible user interface. But today, we’ll be talking about a really nice alternative – Player FM, a free podcast manager that comes with all the right features.
Start by downloading the Player FM app, free of charge, from the Play Store. Open the app once it’s finished installing, and you should see this screen:
As you can see, right from the start, the app offers to manage your podcast subscriptions for you, and suggests shows that you might be interested in:
It also lets you create a free account, which you can register using your Google account, that lets you sync and download your podcasts remotely. Basically, no more lost subscriptions – if you ever switch phones or have to factory reset, all of your old podcasts will still be there! Anyway, moving onto the main interface, you might notice it’s very reminiscent of Pocket Casts, including a grid-based interface that shows you your subscriptions and when the last episode was released for that show:
You can also sort your subscriptions by going into the three-dotted menu and choosing another order:
At the top, you can also switch from the grid-based view to an episode view that shows you the available episode list by hitting the arrow icon at the top:
Listening to an episode is incredibly simple and makes it so that you don’t have to wait or worry about downloading. Simply tap on the show you want to listen to and pick the episode:
And then tap the play icon. That’s it. The episode will start playing right away:
You’ll also see a little playback widget in the notification pane:
Besides the standard playback options, Player FM also offers you extra features like faster playback, silence skip or volume boost, which can greatly improve your listening experience and save you precious time:
Player FM also contains a dedicated interface that lets you find new shows to listen to, organized into various categories, allowing you to subscribe directly from there with a single tap:
One of the most convenient features of the app is called “Play Later”, which is basically a playlist that you can manage yourself. From any episode, simply tap the Play Later button and that particular show will be added to this screen:
These shows will be automatically downloaded and ready for you to listen to at any time. Then, simply tap the play button and the app will start going through your playlist automatically. You can also reorder and organize the list at will, as well as delete episodes directly if you no longer wish to listen to them:
As you can see, Player FM is an incredible podcast app that will make the task of managing and organizing your podcasts incredibly easy. Compared to the other free alternatives, this is by far the most polished and feature-rich. Not only that, but it also seems to be frequently updated and has a snappy and responsive interface that makes it nice to look at. Add to that the cloud sync and in-depth features, and you might have found your new podcast app! Any questions or doubts? Feel free to let us know in the comment section below!