The best podcast apps for Android

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Whether you’re doing laundry, driving home from work, or breaking a sweat at the gym, podcasts are great for filling up your time with the latest news, comedy shows, in-depth story telling, and so much more. There are more than a few podcast apps on Android for discovering all of the shows that are out there, but these six are easily our favorites.

The best

Pocket Casts

Staff pick

Paying for apps is something a lot of people just won’t do, but if you want the best podcast experience possible, it’s worth shelling out a few bucks for Pocket Casts. The app has a gorgeous new design, a dark mode, playback controls, easy content discovery, and can be used on just about anything.

$4 at Google Play

Music and podcasts in one

Spotify

Spotify is one of the world’s most popular music streaming apps, but did you know it’s also home to all of your favorite podcasts? Finding and playing podcasts on Spotify is quite easy, and if you already use the app for your music needs, it’s nice to be able to have everything in one spot.

Free or $10/month at Google Play

Google all the things

Google Podcasts

Launched in June 2018, Google finally released its long-awaited podcast app. Google Podcasts has a nice, simple design, but the real star of the show is its integration with other Google services. You can find and play podcasts via Google Search and have full playback controls using Google Assistant.

Free at Google Play

Super powerful

Podcast Addict

For years and years, Podcast Addict has been one of the most popular podcast apps on the Play Store. Its UI is pretty outdated by 2019 standards, but it sacrifices good looks for power. You can use the app to manage podcasts, audio books, live radio streams, YouTube channels, and RSS feeds. It’s free to download with a paid option to get rid of ads.

Free or $4 at Google Play

Hidden gem

Castbox

Castbox is a podcast app that seems to go unnoticed a lot, but if you haven’t checked it out yet, you really should. Not only can you easily discover all of your favorite shows, Castbox has an integrated community hub, original content you won’t find anywhere else, live radio streams, and so much more. It’s free to use with an optional paid membership.

Free or $15/year at Google Play

Just for you

Scout FM

Ever find it difficult to find a certain podcast you want to listen to? With Scout FM, you tell the app what you’re interested in and then get podcasts stations which curate the best of the best into various categories. It’s a unique take on the whole podcast scene, and it’s one we think you’ll really like.

Free at Google Play

Why Pocket Casts is the best

For years now, my personal podcast app of choice has been Pocket Casts. I was a little leery of its paid nature at first seeing as how there are so many free options out there, but trust me when I say that it is more than worth its $4 price of admission.

The overall polish of Pocket Casts is fantastic. It looks great, is easy to navigate, and runs like butter. There are also a lot of playback controls, including playback speed controls, a volume booster, and the ability to cut out any moments of silnce in an episode.

Add that together with a beautiful dark theme, fun playback stats, auto downloads, and more, and it’s easy to see why this is our top pick.

Google Podcasts is a fantastic free option

It’s kind of amazing it took so long for Google Podcasts to come to market, but in many regards, the long wait was well worth it.

Google Podcasts is 100% free to use, and if you’re deep in Google’s ecosystem, it’s the option that makes the most sense. Finding new podcasts is as easy as doing a Google Search, and if you start a podcast on the app, you can easily pick up where you left off on your Assistant-powered speaker with just a voice command.

Outside of those Google integrations, Google Podcasts gets big points elsewhere thanks to a sleek and simple design, easy-to-use UI, and great podcast discovery.

Spotify’s a good choice for casual listeners

With that said, not everyone needs a dedicated podcast app. If you’re already using Spotify for your music needs, you might as well listen to podcasts on it, too.

You won’t find nearly as many features on it was you will with Pocket Casts or some of the other options on this list, but the fact that you can just listen to podcasts along with your tunes in one single location on an app you probably already have is damn convenient.



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