When comparing SoundCloud vs Pocket Casts, 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 SoundCloud is ranked 5th. 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.
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Pro Subscribe to artists
You can subscribe to artists to be notified the instant they upload a new song or give an update.
Links to related music, based on what you're listening to, can be found in the sidebar.
Pro Follow people
You can follow people with similar tastes or that often find new music. When they favorite a song, SoundCloud will notify you about it.
Pro Explore tab has new music constantly
Explore tab on SoundCloud shows trending music that can be filtered based on genre/tag. There's a constant stream of new music.
Pro Free to use
You don't even have to log in or sign up for an account if you don't want to.
There are paid options for if you want to upload large quantities of audio (eg if you're a music label you'll need this), but it's free to download as much and as often as you like.
Some music labels, especially newer ones, release on SoundCloud before anywhere else.
Pro Creative Commons filter
SoundCloud allows for finding music that is licensed under Creative Commons.
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.
Con Interface is full of bugs
The SoundCloud website has tons of problems, including issues with notifications, favorites, and uploading sounds.
Con Audio ads in some uploaded content
Some content on SoundCloud includes audio ads, particularly sponsored podcasts.
(Note that SoundCloud itself doesn't add these - all the audio you're hearing is exactly as it was uploaded.)
Con Can't do an advanced search
You can't search, for example, for Creative Commons music with the tag #trap. It could be useful to search for music you like that is under Creative Commons.