How to Listen to Podcasts on Your Mac


macOS Catalina divides iTunes into several applications. This means that you will have a much better experience when using the new standalone Podcasts application. If you have not yet upgraded, see our recommendations for third-party customers below.

How to use Podcast application on macOS Catalina

You can think of the new Podcasts app as the Mac version of the existing iPhone and iPad app. Its behavior is similar, although the interface is somewhere between the old iTunes and iPad applications.

If you used the Podcasts application On your iPhone or iPad, you'll see all the podcasts and episodes you've subscribed to when you open the app. You can also explore and subscribe to new podcasts, read or download them for offline listening, and more.

The user interface of the Podcasts application is much easier to navigate than the iTunes IU.

To switch between sections ("Browse", "Listen Now", "Shows", etc.), click on it in the sidebar on the left. In the main section of the application, you can browse and select podcasts and episodes.

The player is at the top. Here you can play, pause, skip and manage playback.

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How to subscribe to podcasts

If you are using the Podcasts app for the first time, take your time and explore the podcasts in the "Browse" and "Best Charts" sections. You can listen to any podcast episode without subscribing to it.

To listen to the last episode of a podcast, hover over the illustration and press the Play button. You can also click on the podcast and then press the Play button next to an episode to listen to it.

To add a podcast to your library, you must subscribe to it. To search for a podcast, click on the "Search" bar.

Type the name of the podcast, and then click it when it appears in the main section.

Click on the podcast in the search results.

In the podcast details screen, click on "Subscribe".

How to listen to podcasts

As we have explained above, you can press the Play button from any screen to listen to a podcast episode. However, it is best done from the "Library" or "Listen Now" screens.

Once you have subscribed to your favorite podcasts, click on "Episodes" in the sidebar. Here you see all the latest episodes of all your podcasts. Hover over the illustration of an episode, then press the Play button to listen.

Click "Listen Now" to see the latest episodes of your podcasts in the "Up Next" menu.

To see which episodes are available offline, click "Downloaded" in the sidebar.

How to download individual podcasts

By default, new podcast episodes you subscribe to are automatically downloaded to your Mac.

If you want to individually download an older episode of a podcast, or an episode of an episode to which you are not subscribed, the process is similar to that of the Music app.

Navigate to the page where the podcast episode is listed. If you are not subscribed to the podcast, a plus sign (+) appears next to the episode title. click on it and the episode is added to your library.

Click the plus sign to add a podcast episode to your library.

The plus sign (+) is replaced by a Download button. If it's a podcast you've already subscribed to, you'll never see anything else than the Download button; click on it to download the episode.

Click the Download button to download an episode.

The episode now appears in the "Downloads" section. Press the Play button to start playback. Click the Menu button, then "Delete" to delete the episode.

Configure Podcasts application settings

In the "Preferences" menu, you can customize the operation of the Podcasts application on your Mac. In the menu bar, click on "Podcasts" and then select "Preferences".

In the "General" tab, you can change the refresh rate of podcasts and select the ones you want to download automatically. The default setting for downloads is "Only new", but you can switch it to "Never" to disable this feature.

In the "Playback" tab, you can disable "continuous play" and configure the jump buttons. Click the drop-down arrows next to "Forward:" or "Back:" to change the jump times.

Third party podcast applications

The Podcasts application is easy to use and because it is now a native application available on all Macs, it is also reliable.

However, the application lacks some features expected by many podcast listeners. For example, there is no play list management option or reliable queuing feature. To obtain them, you must use a third-party application.

Let's see some of the best options.

Pocket games

Pocket games is the best multiplatform podcast client. It is available on iPhone, iPad and Android. In addition, he has a robust web reader and one Mac and Windows App (which is just a wrapper for the web application, but it works really well).

When using the Web or Mac application, you can manage your subscriptions and listen to podcasts. All your reading lists are also available on this site.

Pocket Casts is free on iPhone or iPad, but the web application requires a Pocket Casts Plus subscription of $ 11 a year.



If you want a simple podcast client that you can control without opening an app, take a look at MCAST. You can search for or play podcasts and subscribe directly from toolbar.

Beaten down

Downcast podcast player on a Mac.Apple

Beaten down ($ 4.99) is one of the oldest third-party native podcast customers on Mac (and the only good customer, in reality). In Downcast, you can easily manage your podcast library and create a variety of smart playlists.

The application has also been updated to support the macOS Mojave dark mode.

FM Player

FM Player Web Player Running in Safari on Mac

FM Player is a popular free podcast client for iPhone and Android. A free basic version is also available on the Web. Once the website is open and your Google account is connected, you will see all your subscriptions and the latest episodes in the same place. You just clicked on a podcast episode to read it.

You can find and subscribe to more podcasts in the "Discover" section. Again, the web version of Player FM is pretty basic. If you want to create custom playlists or synchronize playback position on all devices, you must upgrade to Player FM Pro for $ 3.99 per month.

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