Podcasting has become a mainstream media, well almost. Major news outlets like CNN and PBS use it, not mention the countless niche shows out there that cover technology news and your favorite sports team. You can find almost anything if you search around. Apple does a great job of managing with iTunes, but that is of little use to Android customers.
Fortunately there are apps available for Android, and my favorite is BeyondPod, which works in conjunction with Feedly to help you manage your shows.
At the time BeyondPod got started, it used a little known feature called Google Listen, which added a section to Reader where the podcasts you subscribe to resided. But that died along with the RSS program, leaving BeyondPod to scurry for a solution. The developers settled on that same Listen folder, but moved it to Feedly.
Obviously, this means you will need a Feedly account, though it doesn’t mean you must use it as your daily RSS app of choice. Still, when you find that new show you wish to subscribe to, grab the feed address, head over to Feedly and plop it down in the Listen folder. It’s easy enough to do – just click the “+Add Content” button at the top of the page, paste in the address and opt to have it reside in the Listen folder.
That is all very easy, but getting your subscriptions into the Android mobile app is perhaps a bit more confusing than it needs to be. First of course, you will need to head to the Google Play store and grab BeyondPod. You also may wish to purchase the unlock key for certain features. You must first install the app, before buying and installing the key. There are separate phone tablet versions of the app, but one key will work for both.
Open the app and tap the settings button, which is three vertical dots at the top right of the screen. Choose “More” and then select “Import or Export Feeds and tap “Import from Feedly”.
This will bring up a list of all of your Feedly folders. Look for the one marked “Listen Subscriptions” and tap to select it. This results in a list of all RSS feeds contained within the folder. You will now be able to tap on each show you want on your device, and choose categories for them, such as sports or technology. To setup categories, return to the main screen and, once again tap the menu button, followed by “More” and then “Manage Categories”.
There are also numerous settings to choose from – you can set the skip interval, set auto-delete for listened to episodes, enable auto-updating, and more. Drilling down into some of these sections can reveal even more choices, enough to be overwhelming, in fact.
There are several popular podcast clients in the Google Play store, and I can’t pretend to speak for the competition, as I chose BeyondPod when I got rid of my last dedicated MP3 player. However, being able to easily add new feeds from my computer and have them show up on my phone and tablet is a big factor in why I think BeyondPod is the way to go.