Working with iTunes

For Podcast Fans: Frequently Asked Questions

What is a podcast?

Podcasts are episodes of a programme available on the Internet. Podcasts are usually original audio or video recordings, but can also be recorded broadcasts of a television or radio programme, a lecture, a performance, or other event.

Podcasts usually offer each episode in the same file format, such as audio or video, so that subscribers can enjoy the programme the same way each time. Some podcasts, such as language courses, include multiple file formats, such as video and documents, to teach more effectively.

For podcast listeners, podcasts are a way to enjoy great content from around the world for free. For podcast publishers, podcasts are a great way to reach a wide audience.

Apple does not directly provide podcast updates or episodes. When you subscribe to a podcast using the Podcasts app for iOS, or using iTunes on your Mac or PC, you are subscribing to the podcast updates by that particular podcast producer. With iCloud, you can synchronise your podcast subscriptions across all devices.

How can I get started with podcasts on my iPhone, iPad or iPod touch?

The Podcasts app for iOS provides easy access to popular and featured podcasts using the navigation icons at the bottom of the app.

To subscribe to a podcast, tap Subscribe on the page for that podcast. To play a podcast, tap on any episode. To download an episode, tap the iCloud icon in the episode list.

You can manage your subscriptions and play podcast episodes in My Podcasts.

To learn more, see iOS Podcasts Support.

How can I get started with podcasts on my Mac or PC?

The podcast directory in the iTunes Store allows you to find and subscribe to new podcasts.

To subscribe to a podcast, click Subscribe on the page for that podcast. When you subscribe to a podcast, iTunes will automatically check each day for new episodes.

You can also stream an individual episode from the iTunes Store by clicking its episode number in the episode list.

You can manage your podcast subscriptions and play the episodes you have downloaded in the Podcasts section of your iTunes library.

To learn more, see iTunes Podcasts Support.

How much do podcasts cost?

Podcasts on the iTunes Store are free.

How do podcasts work?

To learn more about creating podcasts, see the FAQ for Podcast Makers and the Making a Podcast page.

Do I need an Apple ID to listen to podcasts?

No. An Apple ID is only required if you want to make your own podcast available on the iTunes Store.

Can I subscribe to a podcast that isn’t available in the iTunes Store?

Yes. In iTunes, choose Subscribe to Podcast from the File menu and insert the podcast feed URL for that podcast. In the Podcasts app for iOS, enter the feed URL into the search field in My Podcasts.

How do I unsubscribe from a podcast?

In the Podcasts app for iOS, you can manage your podcast subscriptions in My Podcasts. Select a subscribed podcast, tap Settings, and turn off the Subscription setting.

On your Mac or PC, you can manage your podcast subscriptions in the Podcasts section of your iTunes library. Select a subscribed podcast, click the Settings gear icon, and deselect the Subscribed tickbox.

For further assistance with the Podcasts app, please see the following support articles:

Podcasts app: Playback settings
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5295

Podcasts app: Organising podcast episodes
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT6205

Podcasts app: Syncing podcasts
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT6202

Podcasts app: Sharing a podcast
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT6199

Podcasts app: Managing and organising subscriptions
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT6190

Podcasts app: Streaming, downloading and subscribing to podcasts
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT3281

Podcasts app: Browsing and searching
http://support.apple.com/kb/HT6189