One of the much-ballyhooed strengths of Android is its openness and how much choice it gives users. Those strengths are illustrated well if you want to pick a podcast client for Android. The iOS landscape may have changed in the last few months since I switched to Android, but I always found the iOS podcast experience to be lacking. Not so on Android, if you use DoggCatcher, an excellent podcast client.
Some of the features of DoggCatcher include the following:
- Sync over the air (including options to only sync when plugged in, or only on WiFi)
- Stream audio over WiFi or data network
- Set to automatically keep/delete podcasts based on how recent they are
- Search for podcasts
- Get recommendations for feeds based on your subscriptions
- Set time of day and interval to check for updates to your feeds
- Sleep timer
- Download queue that can be viewed and managed
- Supports feeds that require a username and password
- If you’re already subscribed to feeds through Google Reader or Listen, you can import those feeds.
There are many other features and tweaks available, such as setting or disabling auto play, choosing which audio player to use (if you don’t want to use the default DoggCatcher player), and more. DoggCatcher also offers a widget, so that you can play a podcast from your home screen, without starting the app.
For me, the syncing features are what make this one of my most-used Android apps. Unlike my iPhone, which I had to plug into my PC to sync, syncing is automatic. I have my feeds set to update overnight, so I wake up most mornings to a new podcast or two, already loaded on my device and ready to go. As mentioned in the bullet list above, you can restrict this if you want, so that feeds only download when connected to WiFi.
DoggCatcher currently costs $6.99 in the Android Market, but this is well worth the price if you regularly listen to podcasts. If you listen to podcasts, let us know your favorite app.
DoggCatcher [Android Market]