I am a long time user of the Overcast podcast player. For years if anyone ever asked for a recommendation of a different podcast app than the standard one that comes from iOS I always recommended Overcast. From its beginnings in 2014 to its current iteration now it has constantly been receiving stellar updates (smart speed, voice boost, and clip sharing) that keep me in love with the app. One additional feature that I always enjoyed was being able to upload audio through a web browser that would sync to the app. This is usually a lecture from a website or, more often, content on YouTube that I would remove the audio from and upload to Overcast. This was always somewhat tedious but easy enough. I even created a couple Shortcuts to help me do it on iOS.
Castro is one of the biggest competitors to Overcast. I have always read great reviews and seen high recommendations from people on Twitter. Additionally, the creator of Overcast, Marco Arment, has a good working relationship with the developers of Castro so it has always been something I’ve wanted to try but nothing seemed to draw me away from Overcast until I heard and read about Castro’s new feature called Sideload, which allows you to seamlessly grab any audio on the web and play it in Castro. This includes stripping the audio from YouTube videos.
I’ve been trying out this feature for a couple days now and I am really impressed. Earlier this week I was wanting to listen to a lecture from a school’s website and I went to the URL on my phone and realized there really wasn’t a good way to download it so I made a note to wait until I was at my computer to download the audio and upload to Overcast. When I decided to test out Castro I was amazed at the ease I was able to do this. See the video below:
Additionally, you can download the audio of a YouTube video and play in Castro:
Or when someone sends you a podcast link and you normally have to subscribe to the entire podcast to find the episode you can now just go to the website and grabbed the audio:
So, all in all, this feature for me has me seriously switching over to Castro full-time. The app also has similar features to Overcast such as Enhanced Voice (Voice Boost), Trim Silence (Smart Speed), and clip sharing but the side loading feature might just do it for me.