Just me or is the Podcast app...pretty bad

mtmjr90

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Apologies if this has already been discussed (did a search & didn't find anything)...

Anyway, I had been using Podcast Critter and was relatively happy (in comparison with the other Podcatchers on WP) but decided to give the new native Podcast app a spin when I installed 8.1 preview. I've been using it for a little over a week and I have to say it's pretty bad. That is, it fails at the following 2 core, basic podcast app tasks:

  1. Does not refresh & download in the background - every day before leaving for/from work, I have to manually open the app so it refreshes & downloads over wifi.
  2. Does not reliably maintain play positions - almost every time I switch to and from partially played podcasts, they reset to the beginning.

To me, this is pretty basic stuff. Obviously, I'm using the preview build of 8.1 and I don't expect perfection with the native apps. I do however hope a lot of this can be sorted out before the public release of the OS. It doesn't seem to be getting the same level of attention as the also lacking Music app, but I remain optimistic...

The podcast experience on WP has from day 1 been sub par. It's actually gotten to the point where if something works like I want (on any app, native or 3rd party), I get immeasurably excited. When things go wrong (as they often do), my first thought is "Oh it's Windows Phone so I shouldn't expect it to work [in reference to podcasts]." I love WP and have used it for years, but I'm still waiting for the day when the podcast experience equals that of Android.
 

hmmwv

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I share the feeling, also I always like the NPR Car Talk podcast, and before in 8 I can easily download them, now with 8.1 the download option is gone, I can only either stream or subscribe, which doesn't work for me because even though I choose to keep all it only keeps two episodes on the phone. Really frustrating.
 

MikeSo

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Weird. They download for me. Do you have it allowed to run in the background?
I haven't had any issues with lost positions either.

The only thing I want is better fastforward/rewind. The control is too tiny to be able to control it very good right now. Something how it works in myTube would be great.
 
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herbertsnow

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It downloads for me too. Yes the controls do need to be bigger, and I would really love getting a notification when a new podcast is downloaded.
 

Robbed Time

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Downloads in background for me too. Also haven't observed lost positions. I am actually very happy with it as in the UK we had no podcast support at all in WP8.0.
 

feeked

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My biggest gripe with it is that it doesn't maintain control over the audio while I'm playing bejeweled. Podcast stops playing. Music via xbox music keeps playing, however
 

spokanedj

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For Video podcasts, if you hit back, it doesn't skup back 30 seconds, but restarts the podcast from the beginning. That's the only thing I found annoying so far.
 

j o e l

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Maybe check your wifi settings. It wouldn't download if not on wifi. Having said that, I agree that the podcast app is pretty much just a place-holder right now. Good thing we have Podcast Lounge. The MS made Podcast app will have to be spectacular for me to switch to it.
 

Jupast

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Microsoft seem to love getting their Apps/Software to a certain point, and then throwing the lot out and starting all over again, usually offering a complete bare-bones (poor) experience in the process.

It's gotta be their most annoying habit.
 

txkimmers

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I find it to be on par with the old one, that is to say underwhelming. I really hope it improves soon!
 
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pderosa

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When you search it finds podcasts only to tell you they are not available. I thought it was funny that the first week it said Major Nelson from Microsoft's own podcast was not available. It is now, but I still get an error every time I try to stream it.
 

mtmjr90

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Weird. They download for me. Do you have it allowed to run in the background?
I haven't had any issues with lost positions either.


Maybe check your wifi settings. It wouldn't download if not on wifi. Having said that, I agree that the podcast app is pretty much just a place-holder right now. Good thing we have Podcast Lounge. The MS made Podcast app will have to be spectacular for me to switch to it.

Yep, definitely have it "allowed" to run in the background and I'm definitely on wifi, both at home and at work. Don't know what's going on, but after twice getting to my car in the lot outside of work just to find nothing downloaded and having to stream instead (on a capped plan), I've now asked Cortana to remind me every day to open the damn app before leaving. Hopefully it gets better?

I had been using Podcast Lounge and decided to give Podcast Critter a go after WPC did an article about it. If the native one doesn't get better soon, I'll likely go back to one of the alternatives.
 

mcraine

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+1 regarding all the podcast app issues noted above. I'm experiencing most of them and some intermittently. If I keep an episode in the now playing section, it seems to hold its place. Just don't navigate to another podcast or you start over. I do like the scrubbing bar to move to a particular time in the episode. Too bad the time counter doesn't change until you release the button. Also noticed that holding the fast forward button down doesn't really work. It used to mover forward at an ever increasing speed. Background downloads seem to be hit or miss. In general it seems like I need to hit more buttons to navigate to what I want in the new version. Got my fingers crossed that now that these apps have been pulled out of the os, we'll see regular updates with improvements. I'm guessing that the apps were rewritten when pulled from the os to stand alone and time was a factor resulting in reduced functionality, etc.
 

Tab Numlock

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Does not d/l in the background on my 520. Says files are there when they are not. Usually go into Aerize Explorer to see what's really there and play from there. It's never worked with Car Dash anyway so maybe I'll get an app that does.
 

judah modeste

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I don't mind the ms podcast right now since it's the only podcast app that worked well enough for a particular podcast that i tune into, the others that was able to find my podcast wont download properly or gived me some playback problems so i have no real problems with it.
 

dawindbag

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I'm really glad they moved it to it's own app and I expect it to get better really fast as a result. That said, there are issues.

I also have encountered the losing playback position problem pretty frequently. Haven't be able to hammer out the exact steps to reproduce, but it's fairly common.

I LOVE the variable speed playback, but I want more options. Particularly I want a 1.3x or 1.25x option, I find that's ideal for most sports talk podcasts, 1.5x is just a little too fast.

Many of my podcast cover art are now missing. In the old app, all the Adam Carolla network art work downloaded great, now it's all missing. In contrast, in the old app the Autoblog podcast image was always the wrong one, it was a super low-res favicon instead of the normal cover art, but it's fixed in the new app. Weird.

Love the new ability to scrub playback, major addition there.

Haven't seen any d/l issues yet. Will keep an eye out.
 

electricbopeep

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Downloads are inconsistent. Subscribe functionality is extremely confusing (how does one change settings for individual podcasts series?). Search function, which was supposed to be better due to Bing backend, is actually worse than before (couldn't find video version of Windows weekly). And worst of all, the app is now crashing upon loading for me now.. I've downloaded the third party PODCASTS and slapdash apps, but those have their own issues (often times, when I attempt to play a podcast I've downloaded, I'll get an error message saying the file can't be played). So at this point, I've pretty much lost the ability to consume podcasts reliably. I hope MS updates the app soon and often.
 

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