When comparing Pocket Casts vs Downcast, the Slant community recommends Pocket Casts for most people. In the question“What are the best podcast apps for iOS?” Pocket Casts is ranked 1st while Downcast is ranked 3rd. The most important reason people chose Pocket Casts is:
Pocket Casts has a feature called Episode Filter, that allows automatically creating playlists based on setting such as playing states (unplayed, playing, played), status (downloaded, downloading, not downloaded), episode type (audio, video) and of course podcasts themselves. You can also customize the appearance of the playlist with a color and an icon to help it stand out easier.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Automated playlist creation
Pocket Casts has a feature called Episode Filter, that allows automatically creating playlists based on setting such as playing states (unplayed, playing, played), status (downloaded, downloading, not downloaded), episode type (audio, video) and of course podcasts themselves.
You can also customize the appearance of the playlist with a color and an icon to help it stand out easier.
Pro Remembers playback speed & starting position
You can set a 'start from' position for a podcast to skip a set number of seconds from the beginning of an episode. Great for when you don't want to listen to an intro you've heard a couple of dozen times before.
Additionally, you can also change the playback speed, to slow down fast talkers or speed up slow talkers.
Pro Excellent, easy to use discovery system
Clicking the plus button in the top-right corner will bring you to featured podcasts. From there you can access multiple ways of finding new things to listen to such as: top charts (that can be separated in audio and video), search (that allows searching both by name and feed URL), a list of podcast networks and different podcast categories.
They also have a great selection of podcasts to choose from. The team behind Pocket Casts work hard to maintain a reliable and high quality catalog so you can avoid out of date listings, problems with raw feeds, etc.
Pro Vibrant aesthetics
Pocket Casts has one of the most colorful, pleasant to use interfaces.
For example, the app takes the most prominent color from the album art and colorizes the rest of the playback interface based on that color. This allows the app to stay vibrant and slightly different for each podcast.
Or the way it displays featured podcasts in a colorful mosaic made from album art, makes the whole experience of using the app pleasant.
Pro Auto download specific podcasts
You can set Pocket Casts to automatically download the latest episode of a podcast, whenever a new episode is released.
Pro Queue up next podcasts
From the playback screen swipe to the right to access your podcast playlist. From there you can easily queue up your next podcast.
Pro Quick access to shownotes
When listening to a podcast you can swipe right to bring up all the shownotes with clickable links.
Pro Sync with iPhone, iPad, Android
If you use Pocket Casts on more than one device, you can synchronize settings, playback positions, etc., across all your devices.
Pro Sleep timer built in
Setting the sleep timer will stop the podcast after a set period of time.
Pro Sonos integration
It is possible to connect Pocket Casts with Sonos, and play podcasts.
Pro Auto-downloads podcasts
Downcast can be set to automatically download new episodes of podcasts in the background.
Pro Straightforward discovery system with feed support
This app helps users subscribe to podcasts through browsing top lists and categories as well as entering a feed or OPML address.
Pro Simple to use UI
Downcast has a straightforward, intuitive user interface.
Pro Mac App available
Pro Can stream episodes without downloading
Pro Sync between iOS devices
Downcast can synchronize podcasts and settings across iOS devices through iCloud.
Pro Can prioritize playlists
You can have Downcast prioritize your playlists automatically, allowing you to listen to podcasts in the order your prefer without you having to manually reorganize them.
Pro Set how long you wish to keep your podcasts locally
Downcast can be set to automatically remove podcasts that have been on your device for a certain amount of time or take up a certain amount of space on your device. This can be done to groups of podcasts or on a per podcast basis.
Pro Adjustable playback speed
You can change the playback speed to fit your needs up to 3x the speed.
Pro Sleep timer
You can set Downcast to shut off podcasts after a set amount of time.
Pro AirPlay support
Pro Adjustable skip interval
Pro Prioritizes show notes
Selecting a podcast for playback will bring up shownotes, instead of the more common choice of album art.
Pro Supports password-protected feeds
Pro Gesture shortcuts
Downcast supports multi-touch gestures for navigating around.
Pro Accesses iTunes podcast library
Con Doesn't sync with iTunes
Con Extremely buggy
Around mid-2015 Downcast implemented some code that started to leave infinite loop processes that have the potential to cause the phone to heat up, lag, crash Downcast, or crash other apps. The bugs have only continued to get worse. Go with Overcast or Pocket Casts, or even Podcatcher for the Downcast feel.