Apple Podcasts to Gain Downloaded Episode Controls, Annual Subscription Plans, and Hosting Partnerships

Apple today announced several new features for the Podcasts app, including downloaded episode controls, annual subscription plans, partnerships with hosting platforms, and more (via TechCrunch).

Podcasts Feature
iOS 15.5, iPadOS 15.5, and macOS 12.4 will feature new tools to easily remove accumulated downloads and free up storage space. In the Settings app on iOS and iPadOS under Podcasts, users will be able to choose how many recent episodes of shows are downloaded to a device, either by number of episodes or within a timeframe, such as in the past week.

Users will be able to continue to download all new episodes, but new functionality to turn off downloads will make the Podcasts app function via streaming only. This will be configurable at the show level to provide custom settings for different podcasts.

The updates will also bring features to browse shows by season and filter episodes by status, and give podcast creators the option to present annual subscription plans for premium podcasts alongside monthly subscription options, with annual subscriptions set to become the default. Annual subscriptions will also display cost savings to users where relevant.

The Apple Podcasts Delegated Delivery system will allow creators to distribute both free and premium podcast episodes directly to ‌Apple Podcasts‌ using third-party hosting providers. Creators will not be required to have an ‌Apple Podcasts‌ Program membership to publish their free episodes. Acast, ART19, Blubrry, Buzzsprout, Libsyn, Omny Studio, and RSS.com will be supported at launch in the fall, with more hosting providers to be added over time, and additional details about the new distribution system will be available nearer to launch. Read more on the Apple Podcasts for Creators page.

Downloaded episode controls and annual podcast subscriptions will be available in iOS 15.5, iPadOS 15.5, and macOS 12.4, while Delegated Delivery will debut with supported podcast hosting providers this fall.

Related Roundups: iOS 15, iPadOS 15, macOS Monterey
Related Forums: iOS 15, macOS Monterey

Top Rated Comments

Sakurambo-kun Avatar
13 weeks ago
I switched to Pocketcasts years ago. Every time I check in on the Apple Podcasts app the UI is amazingly even worse than ever. It's such a convoluted cluttered mess of adverts now I can't imagine using it ever again.

All I want is a screen full of cover art with some sort of little icon which tells me how many unplayed episodes I have. Pocketcasts gives me that.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ? Avatar
13 weeks ago
It’s about time. The current Podcast app looks so outdated. It really needs a lot of work.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
al256 Avatar
13 weeks ago
I want Carplay to show which podcast episodes are downloaded without having to endlessly scroll while driving to find the ones that are stored.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MLL63QNA Avatar
13 weeks ago
Call me weird but I haven’t listened to a single podcast yet in my life and I’m 36 years old.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
fwmireault Avatar
13 weeks ago
Nice to see that Apple didn't completely forget about this app, there's still a lot of work to do to make it on par with competitors
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ericg301 Avatar
13 weeks ago
no opml import/export, no dice.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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