Although I’m still stuck on the old version, Instacast by developer Vemedio is my go-to podcast manager on the iPhone and iPad… but on the Mac, I’m still using iTunes like a sucker. But hey, what’s this pretty shiny thing? Instacast Beta for Mac? GIMME.
I haven’t done much playing around with it, but the Instacast Beta for Mac is up to the standard you’d expect from the Instacast family of apps. Discovery and podcast management is a quick affair, there’s support for lists and favorites, you can pump any podcast through AirPlay to any AirPlay compatible speaker, dock or device, and so on. It’s very slick.
What really sets Instacast apart on the Mac, though — and why it might get me to finally get the paid Instacast upgrade — is that it allows you to sync your podcasts between Mac, iPhone and iPad using Vemedio’s home-rolled cloud storage solution. With Instacast 3, Vemedio abandoned iCloud for their own service. The presumable reason for this is because iCloud is very bad at handling databases, making it very difficult to, say, leave off listening to a podcast on one device and pick up listening to it on another. Now that Instacast is on the Mac, though, you should be able to listen to a podcast out on a jog, then come home and pick up where you left off on your Mac. Nice.
The Instacast beta for Mac is free while the kinks are being worked out, but presumably Vemedio will start charging for it when it goes gold. Instacast 3 for the iPhone and iPad costs $4.99.