What is your favourite podcast app in 2022 and why

There are things I love about Castro, but I fear its days are numbered. Castro was acquired a couple years ago by a local Canadian investor. Since then, the founder has left, and a GM for the product was hired, but that person has now left too. From what I can gather there are a couple of offshore developers who have been hired to maintain the app now.

I believe it’s still using Airplay 1, there are frequent bugs, they’ve ben promising an iPad app for literally years, it still doesn’t have sync – I think it has a long way to come, and I don’t see any of it happening anymore unfortunately.


For a longtime I used Overcast but earlier this year I moved back to Pocket Casts due to its greater availability on more devices (mainly my Sonos speakers). I used Pocket Casts in the past, but I found that the syncing of my playback position was often not correct between the app on my phone and my Sonos speakers. As a result I stuck with Overcast and used AirPlay to listen via my Sonos system.

A couple of weeks ago I decided to have a play around with Pocket Casts to see how the syncing situation was now. After adding a couple of podcasts to the app on my phone and singing into Pockets Casts through the Sonos app I found that the syncing was very accurate. I can stop a podcast on my phone and continue on any of my Sonos speakers without issue. As a result of this I moved all my feeds from Overcast to Pocket Casts.


I have to agree. It certainly sounds like it’s heading in that direction, doesn’t it?

Overcast here. Smart speed, and the feature where it backs up a few seconds when you resume playing both make me happy. No reason to look elsewhere.

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Damn I’m a longtime Castro user and had no idea about the preselect! Thanks :+1:t3:


Overcast is my favorite. I’ve bounced regularly between that, Castro, and Pocket Casts for years.

I perceive Overcast’s audio quality on fast-play to be better than the alternatives. I often listen to podcasts at 2x, and Overcast seems more understandable and pleasant at higher speed. This is all subjective and I have some hearing loss, so take my recommendation on audio quality with a grain of salt.

Overcast has some UI quirks, but I realized that I’m spending far, far more time listening to podcasts than manipulating the app, so I live with the quirks. And, truly, the UI is good once you realize that Overcast is one of those apps where you’re better off doing things the app’s way than you are trying to make the app perform exactly how you want it to.

I usually just have one playlist but it seems like a couple of times a month I have reason to break out one or two more, and Overcast makes it easy to do that. Castro doesn’t seem to support playlists at all, and Pocket Casts does but they’re lists of podcasts—not lists of individual episodes. Overcasts playlist system is actually rather sophisticated. You can create lists of podcasts, lists of episodes, and lists of both.

I want to stop bouncing between podcasts apps. However, Pocket Casts just said they’re readying a major redesign so there may be another switch in my near future.

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I’d like it to be Overcast, and have used it extensively in the past, but I’m now mostly Apple Podcasts. Since I stopped commuting, it’s been increasingly important to me to have a Mac app for listening. The Overcast on M1 experience isn’t great (though the Apple Podcasts app is also kinda flawed, at least it works like a Mac app.) My listening is probably 70-30 iOS to Mac, but that 30% is important. If Overcast ever gets a proper Mac or Catalyst port, I’ll gladly return to it.


This is the one thing that keeps luring me back to trying Apple Podcasts. The Overcast app on the Mac, although welcome, is completely hindered by it’s inability to respond to the media keys. If Marco could just fix that one thing (I know, I know, he can’t!) it would be fine.

Apple Podcasts really does seem to be the best solution for those who want a proper Mac app. I never quite could wrap my head around how Podcasts does episode management, but it is fairly beautiful and I do love the curated show discovery experience.

  1. Apple Podcast - the only one, which can play on Apple Watch Cellular without phone and without sync. (No, Spotify Premium isn’t working:(

  2. Castro, the best future - “Sideload to Castro”. Most of my listening from YouTube goes there…

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I used Pocket Casts since they launched, well before Overcast. Once it came out almost everyone in the podcast-sphere was using it, but I stuck with Pocket Casts. Eventually, I switched overnight to Overcast and I think the impetus for me to do that was when Pocket Casts was sold, although Russell was still in charge. I never regretted the switch.

One feature that really impressed me when I switched was priority podcasts in playlists, and the option to jump back to the top after each episode. I found that putting podcasts that post infrequently at the top of the priority list really helped to ensure I listened to their episodes soon after they posted, even if that was very infrequent.


Team Overcast here. I’m a heavy podcast user (I had to put a personal limit at 100 GB of downloads) and as such reliable sync and real time notifications are important for me. I also really like Smart Speed, that’s an absolute must. I also enjoy the uploads feature though I wish it was changed to utilise iCloud. At least it’s possible to use Shortcuts for file uploads. The low size of an app is a nice bonus – shows that the person behind it actually cares.
I also enjoy the Overcast’s Slack. I like it that I can quickly report bugs and give feedback that I know somebody actually reads.
I have briefly tried using Pocket Casts in the past. The UI felt nicer but eventually went back to Overcast. I don’t even remember why exactly, that was about 3-4 years ago. Maybe it was when the company got required.
Downcast I have tried but it didn’t have silence cutting which is a dealbreaker for me. Also, the UI feels cluttered and unappealing.
Castro I have never tried. Mostly because it doesn’t have an iPad app (I sometimes listen to podcasts when playing Sudoku or something similar) and because it’s pricier than Overcast. Lack of sync (of which I have only learnt in this very thread) seems bad too from my point of view.
I am quite honestly shocked how many people selected Apple Podcasts. The iOS app is bad. I sometimes use it to leave a review and even try playing something. It’s confusing, at best. And the Mac port even more miserable. Performance is a joke, even on M1. And the device performing the actual refreshing every couple hours sounds a little too old-school for me.

I agree about the stock podcast app. Plus as far as I know, with all the other podcast apps you can easily transfer your shows to the new app with import/export OMPL. Not so with the stock app. Maybe a non issue if you listen to 5 shows, but for some of you with 20+ shows, going to another app would not be a quick task.

I recently moved to Castro from Overcast. I loved the new look of OC, but the placement of the Mark as played button led to me “Deleting” things by accident, and as I still reach for the top of the screen on Safari to activate the URL bar more than 6 months later, I didn’t want to be be infuriated by Overcast.

Castro is good, I like the workflow. I was about to subscribe, but the fact some said it was barely being maintained has made me think twice.

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I’m interested to see people saying they choose podcast apps based on their availability on the iPhone or iPad. I only ever listen to podcasts on my iPhone, under four circumstances: Walking the dog, doing chores around the house, driving somewhere, or changing my clothes before and after the shower (which I do in the afternoon–I’ve been working from home since loooooong before the 'rona).

I’d guess my listening hours are 60% iPhone / 40% iPad. My AirPods Pro have a much greater range when connected to my iPad Pro so I don’t need to carry anything when working around home.

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Carrying the phone around is not a problem for me. It lives in my left front pants pocket, even when I’m walking around at home.


It’s being maintained. They also staff support so if you find a bug, you can let them know and they’ll communicate with you and fix it if there’s an issue. I have made 14 support requests and all received replies.

What you probably won’t get is Castro 4 any time soon, so, you need to be happy with how it works right now.

I personally wouldn’t use Castro without paying because I use mix to mono, voice enhance, silence skip, chapter pre-select and per-podcast audio settings a lot—you may be able to get by without, though.


pocket casts I have a lifetime premium membership. No subscription.

Overcast (paid) here too: Smart speed, the way it manages podcasts, and the watch integration stop me from looking at others. I trialled Overcast vs. Pocketcast vs. the Apple app when I first got into podcasts. Overcast won then and I’ve seen no reason to move.

The new UI design and mark as a listened button are welcome additions. I wish it had SONOS integration but appreciate Marco’s stance on that.

I mostly listen to them on my iPhone (possibly 85% of total listening time or more), however I find the iPad app useful. Sometimes it’s about not having to go for the iPhone to the other side of the house. The management of items is also much easier on iPad’s big screen. I also sometimes listen to podcasts when I play games (eg. Mini Motorways or Good Sudoku).