Ovedrive Radio: A few podcast apps to get you started
You could call this a shameless plug for Overdrive Radio, but hear me out: You should start listening to podcasts (including but not limited to Overdrive Radio).
It took me a while to come around to them, but once I did, they started taking up almost all the time I used to spend listening to music. Probably like you, podcasts just didn’t seem like something I felt like investing the time into, whether it be finding ones I wanted to listen to or finding a good app to get started with.
Not that a smartphone app is 100 percent necessary to listen to podcasts — You can listen to them online (see an example here) or places like iTunes and Spotify on your computer — but smartphone apps do take basically all of the work out of seeking out podcasts after you pick ones you like.
After you download the app and spend a few minutes subscribing to feeds like you’d like — For instance, Overdrive Radio — new podcasts in those feeds get pulled in automatically to your phone, and you can either choose to download them or simply stream them directly from the app, which is how I’d recommend they be listened to.
For instance, the screenshot to the right was taken on my phone of what the Overdrive Radio feed looks like in the podcast app I use (more on those below). Any new podcast we post will get pushed directly to your phone via the app, and all you have to do is tap it and listen, simple as that.
A quick glance at the preliminary data from some Overdrive research conducted this year shows that a majority of truckers have Android-powered phones (57 percent), with iPhones making up the big chunk of the remainder with 35 percent.
If you’ve wanted to get started, or if I’ve convinced you, here’s how you do it.
Getting started with an iPhone is slightly easier — Only because there’s no choice element involved. Apple has its own podcasts app, dubbed appropriately Podcasts, which can be downloaded in the iOS App Store. Click here (or the icon to the left or screenshot to the right) to download it on your phone. Once downloaded on your phone or iPad, you can search for podcasts or browse sections, top charts and featured sections within the app.
If you do feel so inclined to do something other than Apple’s own app, here are some other options:
Getting started with an Android phone is only slightly different than the aforementioned process, and that’s because Google didn’t make an Android app of its own.
But that makes it more fun, because you get to choose from some good third-party apps. Here are two options I tried, along with a few others available:
Pocketcasts: Pocketcasts has a great interface and is easy to navigate. In my time using it, I’ve also found the player to be more utilitarian and to function better than others I’ve tried. I also have noticed it pushes out updates more regularly than others, meaning its constantly being improved and monitored for performance. It’s easy to find new podcasts in the “discover” section of the app, and it’s easy to see which podcast feeds you’re already subscribed to have pushed out new podcast episodes, as the app presents your podcasts in thumbnail tiles sorted by latest episode (you can change that, of course, but I’ve found that’s the best way to arrange them.
To subscribe to the Overdrive Radio feed in PocketCasts, simply search “Overdrive Radio” in the discover tab.
The only downside — It costs $3.99. That’s fairly expensive as far as apps are concerned.
In short, I highly recommend this app for delving into your podcast listening. Click here (or the icon to the left or the screenshot to the right) to download it. The price is steep, but in this case, I’ve found you get what you pay for, and it’s worth the few bucks if you’re going to use the app with any frequency.
BeyondPod: Before I found Pocketcasts, I used BeyondPod for several months. It has all the functionality you’d need, but the performance isn’t quite as good as Pocketcasts and the interface isn’t nearly as easy or utilitarian as Pocketcasts. It also was a bit more buggy. I found it harder to find podcasts, as it wasn’t as easy to navigate, partly because the design wasn’t as clean or nice as Pocketcasts’. It’s still a very solid app, though, and worthy of a try if you feel like testing more than one app.
The big upside — It’s free. And you can’t go wrong there.
To subscribe to the Overdrive Radio feed in BeyondPod, tap “+ Feed” at the bottom of the app and search “Overdrive Radio”.
Click here (or the icon to the left or screenshot to the right) to download it.
Here are a few other Android options that come recommended from some tech sites: