Instacast 2.0 and the concept of "added value"

Instacast 2.0 is a significant update to one of the most popular iPhone podcast clients. It changes the user interface and user experience while lowering the entry price and adding an in-app purchase for additional functionality. Both of those things have caused some controversy. Our own Seth Clifford, co-host of iPhone & iPad Live and Iterate is clearly on the "ticked off" side of this particular equation. And he's clearly got his Hulk pants on for this one.

Instacast released its 2.0 update yesterday to some Twitter fanfare. As a regular user of the app, I updated immediately. Now, to be clear, I don't love Instacast. In fact, I have lots of personal issues with it. But as a regular listener of podcasts, it sucked the least of all the apps I've tried, and I've tried many. I wish so much that Apple would add even the most basic subscription support for podcasts to iOS within the native music app, but they haven't, and it doesn't look like they will any time soon.What I found after updating was an interface that remained just as abstruse as the initial one, with the "added value" of reduced functionality. Most notably, the default behavior for podcasts downloaded within the app was altered. The original behavior of the app was that when podcasts were downloaded, they would stack up in a list, from oldest at the top to newest at the bottom. Now that order is reversed, to list the newest at the top. Which fundamentally changes the only way I listen to shows.

Read the rest of it via the link below. To be fair, there are some people who seem to really like the Instacast update. I haven't spent any real time with it yet, but plan to. The previous version, as Seth states in his article, had significant usability problems (as do all the iOS podcast clients I've tried).

Source: Seth Clifford

Rene Ritchie

Rene Ritchie is one of the most respected Apple analysts in the business, reaching a combined audience of over 40 million readers a month. His YouTube channel, Vector, has over 90 thousand subscribers and 14 million views and his podcasts, including Debug, have been downloaded over 20 million times. He also regularly co-hosts MacBreak Weekly for the TWiT network and co-hosted CES Live! and Talk Mobile. Based in Montreal, Rene is a former director of product marketing, web developer, and graphic designer. He's authored several books and appeared on numerous television and radio segments to discuss Apple and the technology industry. When not working, he likes to cook, grapple, and spend time with his friends and family.