Podcast Critter a feature-packed new podcatching contender

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Part of me groaned to see yet another new podcatcher for Windows Phone - as if my regularly updated roundup wasn't large enough. Yet Podcast Critter is feature packed and its very existence derives from the other fifteen options not 'hitting the spot'. The search for the perfect podcatcher for Windows Phone is nearing its end, surely, between this and recent updates to BringCast, Podcast Lounge and other favourites. Watch for a revised round-up shortly.

From the rather extensive features list in the Store description for v1.3, hot off the press and released today:

• Subscribe to your favorite podcasts & never miss an episode
• Support for both audio & video podcasts
• Download or stream episodes
• Download episodes in background
• Auto-delete downloads after completion
• Pin podcasts to start
• Light & dark themes
• Choose custom accent colors
• Episode playback position remembered
• Mark individual episodes as played/unplayed
• Specify settings for individual podcasts (auto-download count, episode sort order, etc.)
• Discover new podcasts by searching gpodder.net's vast library of podcasts, or by browsing a wide selection of popular preloaded podcasts
• Import subscriptions from gpodder.net account, OneDrive account, or OPML file hosted on web
• Add podcasts using RSS URL
• Create smart playlists for the perfect groupings (e.g. create playlist for unplayed episodes added this month, downloaded episodes added today, all episodes from specific podcast, etc.)
• Share podcasts/episodes via SMS/email
• Sort podcasts by name, unplayed episode count, or download count
• Sort episodes by name or publish date
• Search for episodes by name or summary keywords
• Choose what happens after episode completion (play next newest, play next oldest)
• Background episode updating
• Live Tile shows number of new episodes added in background/artwork for currently playing podcast
• Full integration into Music Hub - tap history item and it will begin playing right where you left off
• Multiselect allows for bulk subscribing, downloading, playlist building, deleting, etc.
• Export subscriptions to OneDrive/email
• Jumplists allow for easy podcast/episode navigation
• Supports password protected podcasts
• Make fast friends with the Critter itself

This last bullet point is curious - but the mood is set from the opening "Hello Human" and there's a sense of some intelligence trying to make contact with you and organise your listening. Here's Podcast Critter in action.

Screenshot, Podcast CritterScreenshot, Podcast Critter

Eh? Artificial intelligence? A true Personal Digital Assistant?(!); (right) the rundown of recently listened to podcasts...

Screenshot, Podcast CritterScreenshot, Podcast Critter

New for this version is the mini-player, which pops up nudge and scrubbing controls - the headphones symbol folds and unfolds this player from the side of the screen...

Screenshot, Podcast CritterScreenshot, Podcast Critter

One thing you might want to do for each podcast is set it to 'auto-download' - the default is off, so it has to be done (once) for each feed; (right) setting up a playlist of favourite British tech podcasts....

It'll take a week of intensive use before this can be assessed fully, but in the meantime why not give it a go yourself? Ignore the trial version, which is very limited and just chip in a dollar or quid for the full version - it's definitely worth it.

Note that Podcast Critter is being incredibly actively developed, with versions coming faster than one a week - quite exciting!

Source / Credit: Windows Phone Store