The Best Podcast Apps of 2022

Written by: BestApp.com App Testing Team - Updated: Feb 14, 2022

   Best Podcast Apps Badge

For podcast lovers, we recommend checking out Overcast for its flexible playback controls, large podcast library, customizability, and other features that contribute to an enjoyable listening experience. But if Overcast doesn’t have the podcasts or features you’re looking for, we found nine other apps for you to try. Here are the 10 best podcast apps on iOS and Android.

Top 10 Podcast Apps to Try

How We Chose the Best Podcast Apps

When creating our list of the 10 best podcast apps, we looked for apps offering a selection of features that make it easy for users to personalize their experience and listen to their favorite podcasts without distractions. The best podcast apps should be ad-free, offer downloadable episodes for offline listening, and sync across multiple devices. We also noted which apps require accounts, and which have optional subscriptions to unlock additional features.

Choose the podcast app that’s right for you

Each app on our list offers a free version for users to get started. While you may still have to pay for podcast episodes, these free versions give you the opportunity to test out each app’s core features and capabilities. We recommend testing out several apps to see which ones suit your preferences.

Use CarPlay or Android Auto for a safer commute

CarPlay and Android Auto help you enjoy a safer commute by mirroring your phone’s screen on your car’s dashboard. Many of the apps on our list support CarPlay and Android Auto, allowing you to safely control podcast playback with your voice or car controls so you don’t have to endanger yourself and others by using your phone while driving.

Our Podcast App Reviews

Overcast — Top Pick

Overcast App feature

Download: iOS

Overcast offers a simple yet powerful platform for listening to podcasts. You can browse podcasts, purchase episodes, and subscribe to podcasts to get notifications when new episodes come out. Overcast also features a wide range of powerful features to help you get the most out of your listening experience, including the unique Smart Speed, which lets you speed up playback without distorting audio. You can also listen to podcasts during your commute with CarPlay, use Voice Boost to improve audio quality, and set sleep timers for nighttime listening. Overcast is also a great choice for privacy-focused users as it promises to not track or sell sensitive user data.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Premium: $9.99/year
  • Support available: Email
Overcast Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Smart Speed feature controls playback speed Not available on Android
CarPlay support Contains ads
Emphasizes user privacy  

Google Podcasts — Best Free Podcast App

Google Podcasts App feature

Download: Android | iOS

Google Podcasts is an entirely free podcast app that hosts a large selection of popular podcasts. If your favorite podcast isn’t included on the platform, you can add it by entering its RSS feed. You can subscribe to podcasts, download episodes for offline listening, and start a queue to listen to episodes in a specified order. One of Google Podcast’s unique features is its Explore Topics section, which recommends podcasts based on the podcast episodes you’ve listened to. A history of all the podcasts you’ve listened to is saved under the Activity section, making it easy to go back and find your favorite episodes, and the Trim Silence feature saves time by cutting out dead air.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: None
  • Support available: Help Center
Google Podcasts Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Personalized podcast recommendations Doesn’t include podcast reviews
Trim Silence feature saves time  

Spotify — Best for Music Lovers

Spotify App feature

Download: Android | iOS

Spotify stands out from other apps on our list as it’s the only one to double as a full-fledged music streaming service. For podcast enthusiasts, Spotify hosts a wide range of popular and original podcasts, and you can follow podcasts to get notifications for new episodes. To discover new podcasts, you can browse Spotify’s curated collections or search for podcasts by category. Spotify is also one of the best and most popular music streaming services available, giving users access to a massive music catalog, curated playlists, and custom radio stations.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Individual: $9.99/month; Duo: $12.99/month; Family: $15.99/month; Student: $4.99/month
  • Support available: Help Center
Spotify Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Curated podcast recommendations Offline listening only available with Premium
Massive music catalog Free version includes ads
Custom radio stations  

Stitcher — Best for Controlling Playback

Stitcher App feature

Download: Android | iOS

Stitcher is a powerful podcast player with a sleek, user-friendly interface and advanced playback controls. Users can search for their favorite podcasts or browse Stitcher’s weekly top picks to discover new podcasts. You can also browse curated collections featuring podcasts that cover specific topics and categories. Like Spotify, Stitcher also hosts its own original podcasts, though some require an upgrade to Premium to access. Stitcher stands out largely because of its various playback features that let users control their listening experience, including episode skips, fast forwards and rewinds up to two minutes, and sleep timers.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Premium: $4.99/month or $34.99/year
  • Support available: FAQs
Stitcher Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Powerful playback controls Requires subscription for ad-free content
Includes original podcasts  
Curated podcast collections  

Apple Podcasts — Best Podcast App for iPhone

Apple Podcasts App feature

Download: iOS

Apple Podcasts is one of the most popular podcast players and the best podcast app for iPhone users. The app is completely free and includes over 30 million episodes you can stream or download for offline listening. Apple Podcasts stands out thanks to its Siri integration, which lets users ask Siri for podcast recommendations and control podcast playback with their voice. You can browse Apple’s curated podcast collections to discover new shows or find podcasts by genre. Apple Podcasts even lets you search for podcasts and podcast episodes based on topics or people mentioned in the show’s transcript.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: None
  • Support available: Help Center
Apple Podcasts Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Siri integration Not available on Android
Curated podcast recommendations  
Advanced search features  

Castbox — Most Unique Content

Castbox App feature

Download: Android | iOS

Castbox is a feature-rich podcast player that offers a wide range of unique content to keep users entertained. Castbox gives you access to millions of popular podcast episodes that cover everything from news to pop culture and more, and unlike other podcast apps, you can listen to audiobooks, FM radio, guided meditations, and white noise. Users receive personalized podcast recommendations based on their listening history, and you can use features like Volume Boost, Trim Silence, and sleep timers to personalize your listening experience. The app also supports CarPlay, making it great for commuters, and lets users interact with community members through posts and comments.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Premium: $3.99/month; $7.99/3 months; $19.99/year
  • Support available: Help Center
Castbox Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Unique content offerings Requires subscription to get rid of ads
Great playback controls  
Community features  

Castro — Best for Commuters

Castro App feature

Download: iOS

Castro is a great podcast app for commuters who spend a lot of time on the road. Castro supports CarPlay, making it easy to safely control podcast playback while driving, and you can create queues to play episodes in the order you desire. Whenever you create a queue, all episodes are automatically downloaded for offline listening in case you lose internet connection while driving. New episode notifications include episode descriptions, and you can add them to your queue without opening the app by simply tapping the notification. Castro Plus gives users access to unique features not offered by other podcast apps, including sideloading, which lets users easily add their own audio files by dropping them into their iCloud Drive.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Castro Plus: $2.99/month or $18.99/year
  • Support available: Help Center
Castro Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
CarPlay support Not ad-free
Queued episodes are automatically downloaded Not available on Android
Notifications include episode descriptions  

Podbean — Best for Creating Podcasts

Podbean App feature

Download: Android | iOS

If you like creating podcasts as much as you like listening to them, Podbean is the best podcast app for you. Podbean lets you browse, stream, and download over 50 million popular podcast episodes, and you can enhance your listening experience with features like intelligent speed adjustments, volume boost, and customizable playlists. You can search for podcasts by name, get personalized recommendations, and even participate in interactive livestreams to engage with hosts and community members. Podbean stands out from other apps thanks to its audio recording feature, which lets users record and edit podcasts directly in the app.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Unlimited Audio: $9/month; Unlimited Plus: $29/month; Business: $99/month
  • Support available: Help Center
Podbean Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Podcast recording features Contains ads
Interactive livestreams  
Advanced playback controls  

Podcast Addict — Most Customizable

Podcast Addict App feature

Download: Android

Podcast Addict is a fully customizable podcast player that lets users take complete control of their listening experience. It’s the only app on our list that lets you manage podcast, audiobook, news, radio, SoundCloud, and YouTube channels so you can view and listen to all your favorite content in a single app. You can search for podcasts through Podcast Addict, Apple Podcasts, or The Podcast Index, and the app recommends podcasts based on your active subscriptions. Podcast Addict also offers unique automation features that allow users to automatically update, download, and delete podcast episodes based on custom parameters.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Premium: $0.99/month or $9.99/year
  • Support available: FAQs, Email
Podcast Addict Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Very customizable Not ad-free
Automation features Not available on iOS
Automatic cloud backups  

Luminary — Best for Curated Podcast Recommendations

Luminary App feature

Download: Android | iOS

Luminary is the subscription podcast network with an award-winning lineup of original shows you won’t find anywhere else. Subscribers enjoy unlimited access to the full collection of Luminary Original Podcasts, featuring celebrated creators, diverse voices, and important stories told through a new lens from creators like Dave Chappelle, Roxane Gay, Russell Brand, and Lena Dunham. Luminary’s in-house editorial team regularly creates lists of culturally relevant and trending content to keep you up to date with what’s popular, and you can also view personalized recommendations based on your listening history.

Notable features:

  • Free version available
  • Subscription plans: Premium: $4.99/month or $34.99/year
  • Support available: Help Center
Luminary Pros & Cons
What we like What we don’t like
Curated podcast lists Subscription required for most Luminary Original shows
Personalized podcast recommendations  
Bookmark episodes for future reference  

Podcast Apps: Features Summary Table

Podcast Apps Comparison Table
App Subscription Fees or In-App Purchases Features
Overcast — Top Pick Premium: $9.99/year Account Required
Offline Listening
X Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available
Google Podcasts — Best Free Podcast App None Account Required
Offline Listening
Ad-Free
Device Sync
X Subscription Available
Spotify — Best for Music Lovers Individual: $9.99/month
Duo: $12.99/month
Family: $15.99/month
Student: $4.99/month
Account Required
Offline Listening
Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available
Stitcher — Best for Controlling Playback Premium: $4.99/month or $34.99/year Account Required
Offline Listening
Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available
Apple Podcasts — Best Podcast App for iPhone None Account Required
Offline Listening
Ad-Free
Device Sync
X Subscription Available
Castbox — Most Unique Content Premium: $3.99/month; $7.99/3 months; $19.99/year Account Required
Offline Listening
Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available
Castro — Best for Commuters Castro Plus: $2.99/month or $18.99/year Account Required
Offline Listening
X Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available
Podbean — Best for Creating Podcasts Unlimited Audio: $9/month
Unlimited Plus: $29/month
Business: $99/month
Account Required
Offline Listening
X Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available
Podcast Addict — Most Customizable Premium: $0.99/month or $9.99/year X Account Required
Offline Listening
X Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available
Luminary — Best for Curated Podcast Recommendations Premium: $4.99/month or $34.99/year Account Required
Offline Listening
Ad-Free
Device Sync
Subscription Available