Free (as in freedom) podcast player for Android

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Free (as in freedom) podcast player for Android

Postby renatocan » Tue Sep 18, 2012 10:58 pm


My name is Renato and I was a user of Google Listen until they ended the project. Besides not being free (as in freedom), Google Listen worked fine for me, since I could catch the latest podcasts, download them, listen, check info on episodes and everything else I needed.

However, as any other non-free software, Google Listen did not provide freedom, an essential feature. So that, the project was ended suddenly and it was removed from the official market with the excuse that "there were plenty options of good podcast players on the market".

I am really not interested on other non-free options of players on the market, so I decided It was a good opportunity to find a free alternative and start using it.

The fact is that I found some alternatives but none of them seemed sufficiently polished to use "in production". This way, I am considering to start the development a free podcast player for Android (or the improvement of an existing project) in order to obtain something similar in functionality to what Google Listen offered. I've never worked with Android development before and it is probably going to take me some time to begin coding something :-P Because of that, I'd really appreciate if someone were interested in helping out on the development (maybe the original developers of the alternatives I tested ;-)

The alternatives I checked out were: Podax, Gpodroid, Carcast and SwallowCatcher, all of them free as in freedom. Below, I'll give a brief description of the problems I noticed on each one of them: ... odax&hl=en
- Podax seemed to be the most polished alternative among the ones I verified. However, I had some problems with the download of the files. In Podax, the idea is to verify the subscriptions and download the new episodes automatically. This is the first issue in my opinion: in many occasions, I do not want to download a new episode (as when I have lots of subscriptions). Besides that, I had some problems when synchronizing my subscriptions either using a Google Reader account or Gpodder account (it took a lot of time to pull the subscriptions, maybe because I have a lot of them, and some of the RSS feeds did not work, I don't know why). Finally, I did not find a way to download an episode "right now", as if I were leaving home and wanted to download an episode fastly, to listen on the bus;
- Gpodroid did not fetched the subscriptions of my Gpodder account, so I could not test the rest of the functions; ...
- Carcast cannot pull subscriptions from an external account or an OPML file, which is a problem, in my opinion. Besides that, I did not find a way to download an old episode of a subscription;
- SwallowCatcher: although this alternative is in initial development, it is the one that can be improved most easily, I think. It already imports OPML files and the ability to pull subscriptions from Gpodder is under development, as far as I know. It needs the implementation of a good player, a queue system and a way to figure out what episodes are already downloaded.

Sorry for the long message,


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