How to Download, Listen & Subscribe to Podcasts

how to listen to podcasts

Do you listen to podcasts? A growing number of people do. According to a recent survey, 46 million Americans over the age of 12 have listened to a podcast in the last month. That’s 17% of the population, (aged 12 and over). Personally, I am not surprised. I love listening to podcasts. It is a great way to expand your knowledge of the world, grow your PLN, or just be entertained for a while. So, if you have never listened to a podcast before, keep reading and discover how you can get started today.

A podcast is like an internet radio (or TV) show. It is an episodic collection of audio (or video) files that you can subscribe to for free, and get new content delivered to to your device as soon as it is available. If you have ever subscribed to blogs in Feedly or Google Reader, it is much the same idea. In fact, they share a common technology – the RSS feed.

There are a number of different ways to access the podcasts that you are most interested in, but you will likely listen on either your computer or a mobile device. Here’s how to set up your podcasts on a computer or a mobile device.

How to Listen to Podcasts on a Computer

The largest library of podcasts is curated by Apple and can be found in iTunes. You can download iTunes for a Mac or a PC and use this software as a way to subscribe, listen and rate the shows that you want to hear. You can search for specific shows, or browse through the store by category, new and noteworthy, featured collections and more. When you find the podcast you want to listen to, you are only a few quick clicks away from subscribing.

The instructions for how to find and subscribe to podcasts are slightly different depending on whether you are using iTunes on a Mac or a PC, so here are a couple of links that include step-by-step instructions for each device.

itunes podcast store

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How to Switch from Zite to Flipboard

Switch from Zite to Flipboard(1)

So the time has come. I am about to delete one of my favorite iPad apps of all time. Zite has been an amazing discovery tool for me. It has enhanced my learning and given me lots of great ideas to share in this blog and online via social media. However, as you may already have heard, Zite was acquired by Flipboard recently and will be discontinued.

For a long time I was bullish about these changes and carried on using Zite regardless. After all, it still works, and has yet to be pulled from the App Store, but it doesn’t work as well as it used to. The app has not been updated since March 2014. There have been a number of weekends recently when there would be no new stories for several days. When it does work, I have found the articles in my feed increasingly irrelevant to my tastes.

So, after years of great service, it is time to remove Zite from my iPad. The only remaining question was what to replace it with. There are numerous news aggregation apps that will adapt to your specific interests, but Flipboard is increasingly the one I have been turning to for the most relevant and up to date articles for my needs. So, here’s some tips on how to switch from Zite to Flipboard.

1. Adding Topics

Adding topics you are interested in is pretty straight forward in Flipboard. Simply tap the search bar at the top of the screen and enter some keywords. Topics appear as a selection of words that are surrounded by a rectangle. Tap on the one you are interested in and you will get a preview of the kinds of articles you will see in this topic. If you lie what you see, tap the blue Follow button to add it to your the boards you see when you start the app.

adding topics to flipboard

2. Organizing Topics

The more topics you add, the more interactive tiles you will see when you are on the Flipboard home screen. You may have several pages of boards, so organizing them is worth your time. Thankfully this is easy, because it is basically the same method you use to organize apps on your iPhone or iPad. Press and hold on any topic, then drag it to another space to give it a new home. To move topics between pages, press and hold on the topic, then drag it to the edge of the screen until the page flips over. Then drop it where you want it. You can delete topics you no longer want by pressing and holding on a topic, then tapping the “x” in the corner to delete it.

organize topics in Flipboard

3. Reading Articles

In Zite, your aggregate news feed was called Your Top Stories, but in Flipboard, this is called Cover Stories. To all intents and purposes, I believe that it is pretty much the same thing. You can tap Cover Stories to read about all your chosen topics in one place, or tap one of the topic boards to read something more specific.

cover stories flipboard

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