Category Archives: Apps

Podcast Apps: Overcast vs Apple Podcasts

I've been a podcast listener since 2005. I forget when Apple released its Podcast app but when they did I started using it. It was nothing fancy but it was functional. When Marco Arment released his Overcast app the Apple nerdery raved about it so I gave it a shot. It seemed to work pretty well and I used it a bit but eventually switched back to the Apple app because at the time I was also using iTunes on the Mac to listen to podcasts and I liked the fact that all my devices remained in sync. I could start a podcast on the iPhone and finish it on the iPad or Mac.

When Overcast 2 was released I updated and gave it another go. But after a month or two I ended up back with Apple's offering. I just didn't find the features of Overcast worth switching. Largely for the same reason as the first time. I still used iTunes on the Mac for some of my podcast listening.

With the recent release of Overcast 3 I thought I should give it another go. I don't listen to podcasts on my Mac anymore so I figured this time it might stick but this time around I found another reason to stay with Apple's app: Siri. When I'm listening to a podcast I'm usually walking or driving and when I get to an ad I tap an AirPod and ask Siri to skip forward 3 minutes (sorry there's only so many times I will repeatedly listen to an ad for a product or service I'm never going to use). Also, my mind occasionally wanders and it's nice to be able to request that Siri rewind a minute or two. Overcast doesn't seem to work with Siri in this way. Well, it does, but requires a second tap to be instructed to begin playing again. Also, I like to ask Siri to play the most recent episode of a podcast and this works pretty well with Apple's app but not with Overcast.

This fits in well as another example of my recent efforts to simplify my use of iOS. While I'll give an app a try if there's a chance it's better than my current choice, I'm not going to switch unless there are real benefits for doing so and in this case there aren't.