There’s no shortage of podcast apps in the Play Store, so finding a good one can be a challenge—especially if you’re shelling out a few bucks for it. Here are a few deserving of your attention. And dollars.
The Best for Everyone: Pocket Casts ($4)
Whether you’re a podcast newcomer or a veteran listener, Pocket Casts is the top choice across the board. It’s simple enough for everyone to use, but offers pretty much all the features power users could want. It truly offers a great balance.
It features an intuitive interface (that also looks great), podcast discovery, automatic downloading, and cross-device sync so you’ll never miss a podcast if you listen on multiple devices (or if you need to transfer them when you get a new phone).
Its playback settings are highly customizable, with options to change skip settings by the second, increase the playback speeds for faster listening, and automatically remove silence. You can also boost the volume and apply these settings to all podcasts, for a true set-it-and-forget-it experience. So good.
If you’re into video podcasts, but don’t have time to watch the video, you can toggle them to audio only. Pocket Casts also supports Chromecast, Android Wear support for playback on your watch, and a sleep timer.
And it does all this in a super sleek package. Sure, it’ll set you back $4, but it’s well worth it—especially if you spend a lot of time listening to podcasts.
Download: Pocket Casts
The Best for Casual Listeners: Google Play Music (Free)
If you’re not a heavy podcast listener or just don’t want to shell out a few bucks for a podcast app, then Google Play Music is probably your best bet. It’s a relative newcomer to the podcast scene, having only added podcasts over the last couple of years.
Still, it’s nice if you already use Play Music for your music player, since you can manage your music and podcasts all in one place. It’s missing some of the more advanced features that make Pocket Casts so good—like variable playback speed, for example. But if you’re a one or two podcast kind of person, that’s probably fine.
It does offer Chromecast and Android Auto support, though, so at least there’s that.
Download: Google Play Music
The Best Free Option: Podcast Addict
If you’re looking for full features and no dollars, then Podcast Addict is your huckleberry. The free version is supported by ads, so there is a trade-off there.
But if you’re cool with ads, Podcast Addict is a very powerful, fully featured podcast client. It’s loaded full of content, with thousands of different podcasts available along with discovery features to help you find new stuff to listen to. It even tailors recommendations according your subscriptions, which is a nice touch. Like Pocket Casts, it also allows you to import your favorite podcasts through RSS or ATOM feeds.
It also offers advanced playback controls, like variable speed control and automatic silence removal. Pretty much everything else you’d want from a podcast client is also along for the ride here—automatic downloads, podcast management, Chromecast support, and the like.
If at any point you decide you love Podcast Addict but hate the ads, there’s also an option to remove them for $2.99. That makes it a dollar cheaper than Pocket Casts if you do decide to pay for it. Cool.
Download: Podcast Addict