Blog

The Best Podcast Apps in 2022 for both listening + recording

Content

The Best Podcast Apps in 2022 for both listening + recording

You can listen to podcasts whenever you want and wherever you are. The same should apply to recording them, right? No wonder, then, that there is a vast selection of apps for both listening to and recording podcasts. These apps offer an extensive suite of high-caliber features to ensure your experience as a listener or a podcaster is smooth and effortless. 

In this article, we look at the best podcast apps for iOS and Android so that you can find the one for you. 

What is a podcast?

Podcasts are audio programs, just like radio shows, except they’re asynchronous and available for streaming or download. 

Podcasts consist of spoken word, audio episodes that usually focus on a specific theme or subject. Video podcasts are still audio-centric, but they offer the listener a visual element that compliments whatever they listen to. 

In recent years, the popularity of podcasts has ballooned. The ability to listen wherever and whenever, plus the ability to curate what you’re listening to, is the winning combination we’ve all been looking for. 

Related article: What is a Podcast: Definition, Examples, and How They Work

Why listen to podcasts on an app?

To put it simply, listening to podcasts on an app enhances your listener experience. 

  1. Organize and curate your listening 

Podcasting apps make it easy to navigate your podcast library, download new episodes, bookmark shows, and browse your listening history. 

  1. Subscribe to your favorite shows & get exclusive access 

Never miss a beat using a podcast app, subscribe, and get notified when a new episode is published. With some apps, like Apple Podcasts, you can even become a paid subscriber and get access to exclusive content. 

  1. Discover new podcasts

Finding a new favorite can feel like an impossible task with the vast array of podcasts on offer. Podcast apps make it easy to expand your listening horizons. Apps like Google Podcasts and Apple Podcasts use your listening history to recommend new shows that align with your listening style. 

Best podcast listening apps for both iOS & Android

There are a huge number of podcast listening apps out there, that’s for sure. Remember that ultimately they’re all serving the same purpose: helping you to access your favorite podcasts. The only differences lie in the small details. 

Check out this video and read on below to find out more about the best podcast apps to download right now.

Spotify

Price: Free to download, Spotify Premium $9.99/month 

Features: 

  • Music and podcasts in one place. Spotify makes it easy to switch between podcasts and music without having to change apps. 
  • Daily Drive Playlist brings your music and news together. Spotify showcases its selection of music and podcasts with a daily personalized playlist that brings you news updates and a good soundtrack for your daily commute. 
  • Become a paid subscriber for exclusive access. If you want to get more out of your favorite podcast, consider becoming a paid show subscriber for exclusive content and behind-the-scenes access. 

PlayerFM

Price: Free to download and listen, Premium Subscription for cross-device syncing and ad-free listening. 

Features: 

  • Wide selection of sub-topics. Find exactly what you’re looking for with over 500 sub-topics that help you whittle down to the good stuff. 
  • Watch video podcasts. If you want to get more out of your podcasts, try watching video podcasts with Player FM. 
  • Import your favorite podcasts with public RSS feeds. If Player FM doesn’t have the podcast you’re listening to, don’t worry! You can import your favorite shows with their public RSS feeds so that you can have all your podcasts in one place.

Google Podcasts

Price: Free to download and listen

Though Google Podcasts is available for iOS and Android, we’d argue it’s probably the best podcast app for android. 

Features: 

  • Skip over silences and listen at faster playback speeds. Find exactly what you’re looking for with over 500 sub-topics that help you whittle down to the good stuff. 
  • Clean and simple interface. Like with most Google applications, the interface is clean, simple, and easy to use. 
  • Import your favorite podcasts with public RSS feeds. If Player FM doesn’t have the podcast you’re listening to, don’t worry! You can import your favorite shows with their public RSS feeds so that you can have all your podcasts in one place.
  • Personalized smart audio playlist. This personalized playlist brings you personalized and timely news updates in audio form. 

Pocket Casts 

Price: Free  

Features: 

  • Filters that help you find exactly what you’re looking for. Pocket Casts features filters that capture specific moods and search queries such as Morning Run and Daily Grind. You can also create your custom filters, so that when you’re looking for something to listen to, Pocket Casts only displays what you’ve designated as ‘workout’ or ‘bedtime’ appropriate, for example. 
  • Cross-Device Sync. Pocket Casts ensures you can always pick up where you left off, even if you’re on a different device. This includes syncing your playback queue across all your devices so that you only have to curate your listening once. 
  • Trim Silence and Personalize Skip Intervals. Pocket Casts is all about saving you time. You can set the app to automatically omit silences from the podcast without ever affecting your audio and set your own skip intervals so that you can always just cut to the chase. 
  • Episode Search. Find the specific episode you’re looking for without having to scroll endlessly. Pocket Casts allows you to filter by duration, so you can find a spell that’ll finish precisely as you arrive at your destination or finish your task. Or, if you want to hear your idol on a random podcast, you can just search their name and find the episode straight away. 

Stitcher 

Price: Free to download, $4.99/month for ad-free listening

Features:

  • Simple interface. Stitcher is dedicated to its podcasts, and you can tell. Its interface is simple and straightforward so that you can get listening faster. 
  • Curated Collections.  Stitcher makes it easier to find new podcasts with their carefully curated collections, showcasing podcasts produced by women, people of color, independent artists, and more. 
  • Organize your listening with custom groups. Group your podcasts by mood, time of day, situation, or however you like. Anything to make your listening smoother, exactly how you want it.

PodBean

Price: Free  

Features: 

  • Intelligent Speed. Intelligent speed automatically omits silences in the podcast without affecting the audio quality. This means you can listen to your favorite podcasts in less time. 
  • Volume Boost. PodBean normalizes your audio volume to ensure your listening experience is as smooth as possible. The volume boost setting helps to compensate when the podcast audio quality is subpar or when you find yourself in a noisy environment. 
  • Audio Live Streaming. PodBean makes it possible to tune into your favorite shows live. You can join live streams, interact directly with the podcast hosts, and get a piece of the live action. 

Castbox

Price: Free to download, Premium Tier removes subscription limits, allows homepage customization, and gives you priority for customer support.  

Features: 

  • Advanced AI recommendation. Castbox has put their money where their mouth is and invested big bucks into powerful AI engines that bring you highly personalized recommendations that you’re sure to love. 
  • In-audio search. Castbox’s automated transcription feature makes in-audio search possible. With in-audio search, you can search for topics within the audio. This means you can skip any irrelevant segments and get straight to the good stuff.

Amazon Music 

Price: Free to download, Amazon Music Unlimited for $9/99/month gives you ad-free unlimited access, unlimited skips, and allows you to follow your favorite podcasts.

Note: even if you’re an Amazon Prime member, Amazon Music is an additional monthly fee

Features: 

  • Music and podcasts all in one place. Amazon Music is a good solution if you like to switch between your favorite tunes and podcasts on the fly. You’ll have over 70,000 shows and 50 million songs at your disposal, all in one place. You’ll also get access to Amazon-exclusive podcasts. 

Audible Plus 

Price: Free to download if you have an Amazon account. You’ll only be able to listen to the ‘free podcasts’ selection. 

Audible Plus at $7.95/month gives you ad-free access to their whole catalog of podcasts. 

Note: An Audible Plus subscription doesn’t give you access to the entire library. If you want to download audiobooks that aren’t in the catalog, you’ll need to sign up to be an Audible Premium Plus. 

Features: 

  • Podcasts and Audiobooks on one app. If you’re serious about your audio content, Audible is probably for you. Gain access to over 11,000 audiobooks and podcasts with the Plus subscription. You’ll be able to listen to all the classics as well as exclusive audiobooks and podcasts explicitly produced for Audible.

Best podcast apps for iOS only

Apple Podcasts 

Price: Free with Apple Devices 

Features: 

  • Easy and convenient to use. If you’ve already got an iPhone, Apple Podcasts is a natural choice. Mainly because you can listen across your devices with no problem. 
  • Custom group shows together using ‘Stations’. The ‘stations’ feature lets you group podcasts together to suit your needs. For example, you could group your favorite news, and current affairs shows together for your ‘Breakfast’ station. 
  • Become a paid subscriber to your favorite shows. Support your favorite podcasts by becoming a paid subscriber through Apple Podcasts. You’ll get perks such as ad-free listening, early access to unreleased shows, and exclusive events. 

Castro

Price: Free to download, $18.99/year for Castro Plus and additional features 

Features: 

  • Smart Speed and Voice Boost. Castro enhances your listening experience with Smart Speed and Voice Boost. Smart Speed cuts silences out of your podcasts, saving you time. Voice Boost balances your audio and compensates for lackluster recording quality. 

    Note: only available with Castro Plus
     
  • Inbox and Queue. New episodes from your podcast subscriptions will automatically appear in your ‘new tab’ inbox. You can then choose what to do with all those unlistened episodes. You can also personalize your Castro inbox settings so that new episodes automatically go to the top of your play next queue. 

ListenApp 

Price: $2.99 to download on the App store 

Features: 

  • Podcasts and community. Follow your friends, see what they’re listening to, and build a community out of your love of podcasting. 
  • Create and share podcast snippets and audio stories. Share funny moments or exciting insights from your favorite podcasts with your friends within the ListenApp. No need to ask your friends to scroll through to the right bit; simply clip the podcast and share within the app. 
  • Attend live events. Experience your favorite podcasts live. Engage and interact directly with podcasters, guest speakers, and more. Ask questions and participate in the live dialogue, all through the ListenApp. 

PodCruncher

Price: $2.99 to download on the App store 

Features: 

  • Functional and straightforward. PodCruncher is a pretty straightforward app with no frills or excessive features. If you just want to listen to your favorite podcast and nothing else, this is for you. 
  • Watch video podcasts. PodCruncher makes it easy to consume audio and video podcasts all in one app, so you can enjoy your podcasts to the max. 

Best podcast apps for Android only

Podcast Addict 

Price: Free 

Features: 

  • Highly customizable settings. Customize your playback settings for every individual podcast you listen to. You can toggle the skip intervals and adjust the playback speed. 
  • Search by language. Discover international podcast offerings in different languages. Broaden your horizons and linguistic abilities all in one! 

Podcast Republic

Price: Free, in-app one time purchase of $1.99 for ad-free listening 

Features:

  • Podcasts, Audio Books and RSS news/blog feeds. Podcast Republic brings podcasts, audiobooks, and radio together in one place. 
  • Customize skip intervals and cut out irrelevant intros and outros. Customize your listening experience and save yourself time. Toggle your skip intervals and cut to the chase by giving the intros and outros a miss. 
  • In-audio bookmarking. Bookmark your favorite segments or save some listening for later with Podcast Republic’s audio bookmarking function. 

How To Record A Podcast With A Podcast App

Although listening to podcasts on an app is common practice, recording a high-quality podcast hasn’t always been that straightforward. Luckily, Riverside.fm has you covered. 

Best podcast recording app

Riverside.fm

Price: Free plan, paid plans starting from $15/month 

Riverside.fm’s mobile app makes it possible to record an HD quality podcast wherever and whenever you want. Just because you’re using your iPhone doesn’t mean you’re sacrificing quality. 

Record from anywhere

With Riverside’s mobile app, it’s possible to record your podcast even if you’re on the go. You’ll have Riverside’s immense power right in your pocket, so you’ll be able to record with remote guests in the highest quality. 

Video Podcast

The mobile app brings Riverside’s HD recording to iPhone and Android devices. No need to sacrifice your video podcast just because a guest is tuning in from their phone. Same HD quality as usual, even when you’re on the go. 

Records locally 

Riverside automatically records locally, so your recording is unaffected by a dodgy connection or weak internet. Plus, each participant is recorded locally on a separate track to give you the freedom you deserve during post-production. 

Progressive Upload 

Each participant’s track is progressively uploaded as you record. This saves you waiting around when you’ve finished your session.

Livestream 

Livestream your recording session to your audience and give them a real insight into your podcast. Invite your audience members to join the live session and connect with them like never before. 

If you're looking to start a podcast, read our blog that covers all you need to know about recording, editing and more.

Other podcast recording apps for iOS and Android 

Anchor

Anchor is Spotify’s iOS and Android podcast recording app. Its interface is intuitive and user-friendly, so recording your podcast should be a breeze.  Anchor makes it easy to create, distribute and make money from your podcast on all the major platforms. Unlike Riverside, unfortunately, video podcasting is not that straightforward, and all remote podcasts will be vulnerable to weak internet. 

Spreaker Studio

Record, edit and publish your podcast from your phone. Like Riverside, you can live stream your session. However, including remote guests is not as straightforward because Spreaker relies on Skype integration, making your recording vulnerable to unreliable internet connections. 

Podbean 

Podbean is marketed as a recording studio in your pocket. Unfortunately, you cannot record video podcasts using Podbean, so if you’re a video podcaster, this is not the one for you. Podbean also features in-app analytics so that you can monitor your podcast’s performance. 

Best podcast apps FAQ

Are podcasts free?

On principle, yes. If you choose to listen on a paid app, you’ll be spending a fee to listen. Plus, if you’re a big fan and want to support your favorite podcasters, you can elect to become a paid subscriber. 

Can I get podcasts on my kindle fire?

The Kindle Fire was built to be an e-reader, not as a tablet. That being said, you can listen to podcasts on your Kindle fire by downloading an app such as Stitcher

What is the best free podcast app?

As we’ve said, most apps offer the same service. The devil is in the details. Depending on what you like and what kind of podcast fan you are, a different app will work for you. Browse our recommendations above and find a podcast platform that works for you. 

How can I listen to podcasts on my iPhone for free?

It’s too easy. Go to Apple Podcasts and start listening. Alternatively, if you’re a Spotify subscriber, you may prefer to browse their selection of podcasts. 

What is the best app for listening to podcasts on iPhone?

The best podcast app for iPhone is Apple Podcasts. Not only is this already built-in and compatible with all your Apple devices, but there is a large selection of podcasts to listen to on the platform. You can easily group your podcasts with the Stations feature and overall it has an easy interface for listening to podcasts. 

What is the most popular podcast on youtube?

The podcasting space is highly saturated with quality podcasts. Podcast preferences are subjective and sometimes rather niche, so your favorites may not align with someone else’s. That being said, The Joe Rogan Experience is still an all-time favorite. If you haven’t before, you should give it a watch on Youtube. 

Subscribe to our newsletter

Highly curated content, case studies, Riverside updates, and more.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Related articles

12

min read

9 Best Zoom Alternatives for Online Recording 2022 (Free & Paid)

Riverside.fm is an audio-video tool that collapses the pod/broadcast studio experience into your browser. The service captures lossless audio and up to 4K video locally, syncs it, and uploads as you go.

12

min read

How to Make a Successful Podcast: 15 Effective Tips to Try

Riverside.fm is an audio-video tool that collapses the pod/broadcast studio experience into your browser. The service captures lossless audio and up to 4K video locally, syncs it, and uploads as you go.

16

min read

Podomatic Podcast Host: Review & Walkthrough

Riverside.fm is an audio-video tool that collapses the pod/broadcast studio experience into your browser. The service captures lossless audio and up to 4K video locally, syncs it, and uploads as you go.