It wasn’t that long ago that rumors predicted that Google was planning to bring a new podcasts feature to its popular Play Music app.
This would see Google add yet another media platform to its already large list of options available in the Play Store. With it already offering books, movies, music downloads and streaming, apps and games, it would mean Google would now offer virtually every kind of popular media. Popular podcaster, Bill Simmons confirmed the move on Twitter before taking down his tweet earlier today.
The user interface is pretty much identical to the rest of the Play Music app, in that different podcasts show up on Material-like cards, while the rest of the UI is predominantly white and orange.
As you’d expect, the podcasts option is accessed through the sidebar menu on the left, and is listed just above ‘Browse Stations’, underneath all the other options. Once accessed, the default home screen is the ‘Featured’ collection of podcasts, but you do have the ability to search for specific podcasts, or browse if you’d rather find your own. If you select a specific podcast you can listen to individual episodes and subscribe to channels.
For those of you who don’t want to miss a single show, you’ll be able to auto-download the last five episodes of any podcast as well as select to receive a notification for any specific podcast every time there’s a new episode to listen to.
In short, the podcast section seems to offer everything you’d expect to see in a podcast app. It’s immediately useful, and means you won’t have to download a third party app to listen to your favorite podcasts. Sadly, we don’t know exactly when Google intends to officially launch the service. Given that this is showing up for a handful of users, it’s safe to assume Google is in the final stages of server-side testing.
There’s no way of knowing if/when you’ll get access, but if you want to, at least ensure you download the latest Play Music APK, you’ll perhaps have a chance at getting a sneak-peak at the upcoming feature. If you have an older version of the app, you almost certainly won’t see it.