iOS 14.5 has borked the Podcasts app

Podcasts on iPhone 11 Pro
Podcasts on iPhone 11 Pro (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Podcasts appear to be very broken in iOS 14.5.
  • The recent update has thrown up dozens of bugs and users are not happy.

Apple's latest iOS 14 update, which brings with it a new Apple Podcasts Subscriptions service, appears to have broken the Apple Podcasts app in all kinds of different ways.

Noted by MacRumors, a slew of bugs and issues appear to have come to light following the update:

In spite of redesigning its Podcasts app with iOS 14.5, long-standing bugs within the app persist, and Apple has introduced a range of new crippling usability problems, according to hundreds of reports from users across Twitter and Reddit.

One notable issue that has not been fixed is syncing issues, with users reporting that previous problems with libraries not syncing, podcast settings not carrying over, and cross-device listening all still persist:

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Some users reportedly noted that the new update has reset download preferences to download every episode of the app, from Reddit:

I updated to iOS 14.5 then took my dog for a walk and listened to a podcast. I've been doing this for 6 years (the walk and podcast part, not the update to iOS 14.5 part… that was a one time thing) so all my settings are pretty dialed-in. I noticed that my phone was getting really warm, then I got a text message from AT&T that I'd chewed through 75% of my data. Confused, I looked at the cellular data consumption stats and the Podcast app was over 8 GB for the current period. I quickly turned off cellular data and finished my walk. When I got home, I noticed that episodes from as far back as August of 2020 were in the Downloaded folder. That's when I checked the per episode setting and realized the settings for every show had been reset to default.

Users have also reported issues finding unplayed podcasts, hiding played episodes and more.

Have you updated to iOS 14.5? Let us know if you're experiencing issues with the Apple Podcasts app.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9

  • I haven't had any issues with iOS 14.5. In fact, it seems to have fixed a long time issue with Safari freezing up while entering info. Like when resetting passwords, logging in to sites, and whatnot. This was an issue for many users for at least 6 months.
  • Prior to the release my way of listening to many podcasts was to add episodes to my library from shows that I don’t subscribe to because I only want some episodes and not all content. In the new version this equates to saving episodes but not following. With these episodes it is really hard to find them from the shows or smart play feature. My only option is to play from the saved screen. Unfortunately, with the iOS 14.5 podcast app it no longer removes saved shows after they have been played. I now find there is a lot of manual intervention to keep on top of my podcast library.
  • Sorry, one more glitch with the 14.5 (and also 14.5.1) podcast app. For those shows that I do follow and (maybe I’m alone in doing this) I always listen from oldest to newest, I’m suddenly faced with the full back catalogue of episodes for these shows. Am I really expected to mark every episode to a weekly show as played from 2011? That’s sure gonna take some time