These are the Best Podcast Apps currently available in 2021: Spotify, Pocket Casts, and more!
Just as music streaming has overtaken buying physical music mediums like CDs, and digital streaming services like Netflix have replaced physical rental stores (and slowly replacing television as well), podcasts are well on their way to replacing traditional radio shows. We’re in the midst of an internet-centric generation where even games can be played without owning gaming hardware, and it’s all thanks to the magic of streaming. So if you’re looking for the best Android app of them all for streaming your favorite podcasts, we’ve rounded up some of the best ones currently available for your smartphone.
From multi-purpose apps, to apps that are exclusively dedicated to podcasts, all the way up to apps that allow you to record your own podcasts, we have pretty much everything here for you for both iOS and Android.
Spotify is actually a music streaming app first, but it does a pretty good job at podcasts too. It’s actually best as a one-stop-shop for all your music and podcasts. It has that sweet suggestion algorithm we’ve all come to love Spotify for, as well as an immense library of both music and podcasts for you to check out. If you’re only into podcasts, all of Spotify’s advantages, including recommendations and Premium features such as downloading, also apply to you.
It’s one of the best music apps and coincidentally one of the best podcast apps currently available for your smartphone.
Anchor is another app developed and owned by Spotify. It doesn’t try to replace Spotify when it comes to hosting big-name podcasts, but if you’re into indie, less known ones, or into actually recording your own, then Anchor is a great option for you. It offers several editing options and you can add your own interviews, include background music from Spotify, sound effects, and more, among many other features. Its best proposal is how you can go from creating your podcast, distributing it online, to even monetizing it, straight from your smartphone.
If you like to get involved in the creative process of podcasts rather than just listening, then this is one of the best podcast apps available out there.
Google Podcasts is as barebones as it gets, but I mean, you don’t really need a lot of features if all you’re going to do is listen to your favorite podcast, right? Google Podcasts is pretty amazing as a dedicated app, given how it allows you to not only listen to podcasts but also to subscribe to them, get notifications whenever a new episode rolls out, get recommendations for both shows and episodes, customize your listening experience, and listen on multiple devices.
It’s really one of the best podcast apps available out there, even if it might be a little bit lacking in features compared to others in the list. It does have an immense library to make up for it, though.
On the completely opposite end of the spectrum, we have apps with lots of features, and on the helm of that is Pocket Casts. It’s an app for people who listen to a lot of different podcasts. It has a Material Design-based user interface, light and dark themes, useful search and filtering options, and much more. There’s a lot of features for both the playback experience and the app itself, which makes it perfect for people who want their listening experience tuned in just the way they want.
It’s definitely one of the best podcast apps out there, and one that’s definitely worth a look.
Other podcast apps like Castbox have had their spot on the podium stolen by more popular options like Pocket Casts and Spotify, but these are also worth a very close look. It’s far from the best, but at 10 million downloads, it’s actually fairly more popular than you’d think. It’s ad-supported, so that’s something you’re going to have to live with, but it also comes with a healthy amount of features such as downloading and uploading your own podcasts, and even something called “Zen Mode” (no, this is not an OnePlus app) which is an “ambient sound player”.
Stitcher also holds its own as a viable alternative that’s also pretty popular, clocking in at five million installs. You can easily search for shows and even individual episodes. You can also create playlists, find new podcasts, listen to the news, and more. It offers a premium subscription service for $4.99/month to remove ads and listen to original Stitcher shows. While the UI can be a little rough around the edges, it’s still an amazing resource for downloading and listening to podcasts on your device.
It’s definitely worth a shot if you’re into having a massive library.
If you’re not looking into listening to podcasts and you want to make them instead (and Anchor is not your cup of tea for whatever reason), then Spreaker Studio is the option for you. This is a highly recommended podcasting app for how complete it is, both for recording voice and music, with multiple audio options for a professional studio-worthy experience.
The one-tap distribution also ensures that, once your podcast is done and edited, you can easily share it with the world through your platform of choice, be it Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and more. Spreaker also has their own podcast streaming service, but this app is the one that gets the most attention out of the two.
If you’re into podcasting yourself, this is the studio to go for.
Last but definitely not least, we have Podbean, which is also a pretty popular non-mainstream option clocking in at five million downloads on Google Play. Although this app has limitations regarding space and bandwidth in its free version, it’s really very simple and functional.
You may also be interested in its paid version depending on how convenient you find it. It allows you to play hundreds of podcasts and gives you the possibility of recording episodes yourself like other apps in this list, which is actually a rare feature. It’s one of the best podcast apps out there.
This pretty much sums it up for the best podcast apps available for your smartphone. While we have plenty of options, my personal favorite is Spotify since it serves as a single-stop-shop for all your audio needs for both music and podcasts, and paying for one single service (Spotify Premium) will get you both a premium music experience as well as a premium podcast experience. It does have a (kind of limited) free version too, if the paid subscription is out of your budget for the month. Otherwise, the second-best option in this list is a tie between Google Podcasts and Pocket Casts.
If you’re going to take on the adventure of recording podcasts yourself, Spreaker Studio and Anchor are as good as they get with several features and the ability to distribute your podcast however, whenever, and wherever you want. All of the options in this list will give you an amazing overall podcast experience, so what are you waiting for? Make your pick and download now!