How do I listen to a podcast?
It seems a simple question but until I became co-host of the podcast www.twowomenchatting.com I had never listened to a podcast and to be totally honest it was mainly due to the fact that I had no idea how to. And talking to many of my friends (Babyboomers and Gen X as we are known!) they didn’t either. We grew up using phone boxes, fax machines and paying for all the music and movies we wanted to watch or listen to. So we assumed we would have to pay to listen to a podcast.
Podcasts are absolutely amazing - all you need is access to the internet and you can listen to a podcast very easily and totally free.
So what is a podcast?
A podcast is basically a collection or series of digital audio files that are normally hosted by an individual or individuals who lead a conversation, share stories, discuss relevant topics, or report the news. They may be totally focused on specific TV series like The Office Ladies, historical events such as The Lady Killers or Two WomenChatting where hosts Liz & Michelle chat about redefining themselves in midlife.
Each individual audio recording is known as a podcast episode and there are literally millions of podcasts out there so it can be very overwhelming. To add to this many podcasts hosts only record a few episodes yet they are still listed on most sites years later so you have to trawl through them all.
How do I access a podcast?
On a website
The simplest way to listen to podcasts is on a web browser like Google Chrome, Safari or Microsoft Edge. You can do this from any computer or from the web browser on your phone.
Find a website that has podcasts you like TWC www.twowomenchatting.com
Find the player on the page, https://www.twowomenchatting.com/episodes check your device’s sound is switched on, and click play to listen to the podcast.
On your iPhone or iPad
If you have an I Phone you can use the Apple podcasts app to listen to podcasts.
The Podcasts app should already be downloaded on your phone so search your apps for ‘Podcasts’. If it’s not, go to the app store and download it.
Open the Podcast app and go to the search page -click on the magnifying glass button in the navigation at the bottom.
A search box should appear at the top, next to another magnifying glass icon. Tap on this and type in the name of the podcast you want to find eg: Two Women Chatting (TWC). Hit “enter” on the keyboard.
Choose the podcast you want from the search results and tap on it. This should take you to the podcast’s homepage.
Once you’re on the podcast homepage you’ll see a list of recent episodes. Tap on one to play it.
If you like what you hear, a subscribe button at the top of the page lets you subscribe for free. This means the app will automatically download the latest episodes to your library.
On your Android phone
If you have an Android phone you can use the Google podcasts app.
Search “Google podcasts” in the play store app
Install the app.
Once you open the app, use the search box (look for the magnifying glass icon) and type in the name of the podcast you want to find eg: Two Women Chatting (TWC)
Choose the podcast you want from the search results and tap on it again. This should take you to the podcast’s homepage.
Once on the podcast homepage you should see a list of the most recent episodes. Tap on one to play it.
If you like it, tap the subscribe button at the top of the page. When you subscribe to a podcast, it’ll appear at the top of the Google podcasts app, and a new section in the app will let you know about new episodes from podcasts you’ve subscribed to. You should also be able to listen to podcasts from the Google search app, just search for the name of the podcast.
Listen via Alexa or Google Home
You can do so by using the Alexa app and the Tune In radio service.
You can play podcasts via Google Home just by simply using voice commands that specifically ask for a certain podcast. (Google: 'Play podcast about ....')
Why should I subscribe to a podcast?
The best way is to follow and subscribe to a podcast if you find good ones. Normally when you think of subscribing it means you have to pay but the good news is that the majority of podcast shows are free.
One of the benefits of subscribing to a specific podcast you enjoy is that any new episode of the show that is released will automatically download to your device in your podcast app. That means that you seamlessly receive new content minutes after it is published by the podcast creator and eliminates the step of manual download. To subscribe, look for the subscribe button—usually available in a show description area. Of course, you can unsubscribe from a show at any time too.
The great thing about podcasts is that you can listen whilst doing something else and as you begin listening you will find some shows lend themselves to “binge listening” and others you will want to take more time over.
And don’t forget to if you discover a podcast you really enjoy write a review and share it on social media—it’s really helpful, especially for independent podcast creators for listeners to spread the word.
So what are you waiting for? Find the app (or the website), browse, download, listen, subscribe, spread the word and become a podcast fan so many.
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