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Podcasts app for iOS: Syncing podcasts

You can sync your podcast subscriptions, stations, and playback position between your iOS devices, computers with iTunes, and Apple TV. To do so you'll need to use the same Apple ID on all devices.

Requirements

  • An Apple ID signed in to the iTunes Store on all devices.
  • iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch devices should be using iOS 7 or later.
  • Mac or PC with iTunes 11.2 or later.
  • Apple TV with Apple TV 6.0 or later.

Enable syncing

Any computer or iOS device you have that is signed in with the same Apple ID can sync podcast subscriptions, stations, and playback position. The details on syncing section below expounds on this.

iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

  1. Tap Settings.
  2. Tap Podcasts.
  3. Toggle Sync Podcasts to On or Off.
    Podcasts syncing - iOS toggle

Mac or PC

  1. Open iTunes and then click the iTunes menu.
  2. Choose Preferences and then click the Store tab.
  3. Place a checkmark next to "Sync podcast subscriptions and settings."
     Podcasts syncing - desktop toggle

 

Details on syncing 

Enabling syncing for podcasts syncs subscriptions, stations, and play position. Here are the details on everything that syncs.

Subscriptions

  • Subscribing
    Syncing podcast subscriptions will download the newest episode for each podcast you are subscribed to (but not previous episodes for that podcast). If you choose to download other episodes for a subscription on one device, they won't automatically download to your other devices. See the transferring section below for more information.
  • Unsubscribing
    If you unsubscribe from a podcast on one device, all of your other devices will unsubscribe to that podcast. If you re-enable a subscription to a podcast, all of your other devices will subscribe to that podcast again. 
  • Deleting
    When you delete a subscription on a device you'll also automatically be unsubscribed to it on all of your devices. If you delete a podcast on your iOS device, iTunes on your computer will show the message "This podcast has been deleted from another device, but has saved episodes."
  • If you click Resolve you'll see the message "Do you want to delete or restore syncing of the podcast?"
  • If you want to keep any episodes that you've saved on your computer, click Restore Sync on the the dialog box. The subscription will then be added back to your other devices.
  • If you click Delete, the podcast and all its episodes will be deleted. If you delete a podcast subscription on your computer, it will delete the subscription on your iOS devices including downloaded episodes (unless they're marked as Saved).

Stations

When you create a station in iTunes on your computer, it will appear on your other devices. If you create a station in the Podcasts app for iOS it will appear on your other devices. Any station settings you change will also sync to all of your devices. If you delete a station on one of your devices, it’ll delete on every other one too.

Playback position

Podcasts can remember your playback position between devices and computers so you can always start where you left off. As long as syncing for Podcasts remains on for your iOS device, playback position will sync. However, you'll need to enable this setting in iTunes on your Mac or PC since it's off by default.

On your computer

  1. From iTunes pull-down menu select Preferences
  2. Click the Store tab
  3. Enable "Sync playback information across devices." It may take a few minutes for syncing to finish.    
    Podcasts syncing - Playback position

 

Transferring episodes and playlists

Podcast episodes on one device don't automatically download on your other devices. If you want all your downloaded episodes to appear on your other devices, you'll need to sync your iOS devices to your computer over Wi-Fi or with a USB cable.

  1. Connect your iOS device to your Mac or PC with iTunes.
  2. Click the Podcasts tab.
  3. Pick which downloaded podcasts should appear on your iOS devices as well.
    Podcasts syncing - downloads and playlists syncing
  4. To sync an iTunes playlist of podcasts to your iOS devices, place a checkmark next to them under "Include Episodes from Playlists." These playlists will appear in My Stations in the Podcasts app for iOS.
  5. Click Sync.
Last Modified: May 15, 2014
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  • Last Modified: May 15, 2014
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