Podcast Lounge, the name sounds familiar, right? It should as the app was previously branded BBC Podcast Lounge, which is highly rated in the Windows Phone Store. Due to some legal entanglements with the BBC, Igneous Software has tasked itself with rebranding its app, along with improving the catalogue of podcasts available and implementing new features.
We've been playing with the beta (now into revision 3) for little over a day and are impressed with what we've seen so far. So what can you expect to see in the upcoming version when it's released and available to download? We'll quickly run you through what's new and initial thoughts on improvements applied to the experience.
But first, what's the deal with the BBC? If you're out the loop, we've previously looked at the issues Igneous Software has had to either solve or workaround and the upcoming version of Podcast Lounge is the polished result of effort poured into development. On a basic note, it was revealed to us complications have arisen between the BBC and the company regarding compliance with the corporation's third-party business license.
Now it's time to check out the update.
Say hello to the new Podcast Lounge
Podcast Lounge is the revamped offering from Igneous Software, which expands on the previous BBC focused app. The current version is already a seamless experience and offers solid foundations for Podcast Lounge to be further developed.
The catalogue of podcasts has been bumped to over 20,000 podcasts. It's now a valid solution for those who can't enjoy native podcast support in Windows Phone. Podcasts can even be added manually using RSS feeds, should the collection of bundled shows not suit your requirements. If you're a major podcast listener, Podcast Lounge does offer a unique feature - the ability to pause and resume playback at a later time (the app remembers the play position).
A rich search system is implemented that enables users to find even the most obscure podcasts. We've had no issue locating shows we've missed or would like to tune into. As well as locating programmes, overall app performance has been improved and a number of bugs have been addressed. Full download and offline playback functionality is pulled across for those who hop in and out of signal coverage or endure long journeys.
The Windows Phone Central Podcast is also featured too!
Here's a changelog detailing everything that has been altered or implemented over the course of the beta thus far:
- Totally new podcast library engine offering over 20,000 programmes
- Unique Podcast search facility that’s unbeaten on Windows Phone
- Added support for remembering play position both inside and outside the app
- Added multi-selection facilities to the download manager
- General performance improvements across the board
- Can handle deletion of playing podcasts
- Revised status text on episodes now shows playback status
- Improved buffering notice on player screen
- Added support for programme website links
- Disappearing downloads issue identified and corrected – facility added to recover lost downloads
- Added ability to get to original programme from the downloads section
- Added “My Library” support allowing users to specific their own RSS feeds
- Improved panorama by allowing headers to scroll like Zune
It's quite the update, with the main focus being the rather large collection of shows available. As stated already, we've been playing with the latest beta for some time and have found the experience to be top notch. The manual podcast management, rich search system, offline playback with download manager and solid stability makes Podcast Lounge a perfect podcast solution.
We'll be sure to update you all once the app update has been submitted to the store. For now, you can download the current version of Podcast Lounge for $1.99 from the Windows Phone Store.