The recent downgrade in the Apple Podcasts app for iOS is bad news for listeners and producers. Fortunately, I have free suggestions for both listeners and creators. It’s a premium —yet free— alternative podcast consumption app which is exempt from the new Apple Podcasts deficiency and is multiplatform for Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch and even Apple Watch. The alternative app even offers a free listing and direct link for your show(s). Ahead, I’ll clarify what feature Apple strangely removed from its own Apple Podcasts app but still flourishes in the free premium app I recommend.
What Apple sadly removed in Apple Podcasts
Sadly, Apple removed a key feature from the latest versions of Apple Podcasts: rich episode notes. As a result, words we often have in our rich episode notes like what we display in italics, words in bold and human links like this one are now sadly castrated: The words that were in italics or bold sadly become plain text, and the human links become just powerless words without any of their prior powers. This is one of many deficiencies I have previously criticized in the Spotify player too. Some other podcast consultants have suggested that we should downgrade our episode notes to match the lowest common denominator of these weak podcast consumption apps like the Spotify player and now the Apple Podcast player too. They say we should stop using bold, italics and human links in favor of ALL CAPS and ugly links like https://CombinedHosting.com. Instead, I believe we should continue to create rich episode notes (including italics, bold and human links) and encourage listeners to use good podcast consumption apps that continue to support rich episode notes. That’s why I am beginning to add them to my podcast websites and mentioning this aloud in upcoming episodes.
The solution: Pocket Casts
Pocket Casts is a premium yet free app for Android, iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch and even Apple Watch. Pocket Casts can optionally sync your podcasts and their playback location across all your devices. Unlike many other podcast consumption apps, Pocket Casts even includes images you may have in your rich episode notes. Pocket Casts is available free from both the Apple AppStore and the Google Play Store. Its website is PocketCasts.com.
Direct link to subscribe in Pocket Casts
To facilitate having listeners subscribe free to your show in Pocket Casts, you can (and should) list your podcast’s RSS feed with Pocket Casts and then create a direct link to it to include in your podcast’s website. (Pocket Casts doesn’t charge for the listing or the link.) That’s what I have done already with my CapicúaFM show and some others.
Your current podcast host doesn’t support rich episode notes?
If your current hosting company doesn’t offer rich episode notes, with italics, bold and human links, consider the offers available at CombinedHosting.com where the episode notes indeed support italics, bold and human links. Also, unlike many other podcast hosting offerings, with CombinedHosting.com, your RSS feed always uses your show’s own domain, nobody else’s. CombinedHosting.com does this as standard, without any extra charge or hassle. This is key both for branding and to protect you in case of any potential future disputes.
Having rich episode notes (including italics, bold and human links) is something I value greatly, both as a content creator and and a content consumer. It is sad that Apple has removed this capability in its Apple Podcasts app and I hope Apple corrects this soon. In the meantime, I know that there are many good podcasts apps available on different platforms, but its simplest to recommend a single one that is great and works on so many platforms, rather than having to recommend a different one for each platform.
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There is currently no financial relationship between Pocket Casts and Allan Tépper or TecnoTur LLC. CombinedHosting.com is a service mark of TecnoTur LLC, where Allan Tépper is the director. Some of the other manufacturers listed above have contracted Tépper and/or TecnoTur LLC to carry out consulting and/or translations/localizations/transcreations. Many of the manufacturers listed above have sent Allan Tépper review units. So far, none of the manufacturers listed above is/are sponsors of the TecnoTur , BeyondPodcasting, CapicúaFM or TuSaludSecreta programs, although they are welcome to do so, and some are, may be (or may have been) sponsors of ProVideo Coalition magazine. Some links to third parties listed in this article and/or on this web page may indirectly benefit TecnoTur LLC via affiliate programs. Allan Tépper’s opinions are his own. Allan Tépper is not liable for misuse or misunderstanding of information he shares.
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