Since the launch of last year, Google Podcasts has focused primarily on Android devices and Google Home. A web experience on podcasts.google.com is under development and already supports episodes of listening, syncing and browsing.
When you share a specific podcast or episode, the Google Podcasts app on Android generates a google.com/podcasts URL. This sharing feature was added last November and is available in the overflow menu in the upper right corner.
By clicking on the link in a browser, users access a basic page featuring cover illustrations, the name of the podcast and the editor, with a link to manually open the Android application. For example, you will find below the link to Alphabet Scoop in Google Podcasts. This feature was an important way to share episodes in Google Podcasts and asked friends to search and subscribe manually.
A Twitter user today spotted how to change the host in podcasts.google.com will load a basic web experience. This includes a description of the show and a list of "available episodes", with an interface identical to that of Android. You can also play an episode, which brings up a player at the bottom of the screen, directly on the web.
Basic controls include play / pause, rewind 10 seconds and fast forward 30 seconds, as well as adjust the playback speed from 0.5x to 3x. Cover illustrations and other podcasts are on the left, while a timestamp is available on the right. Overall, this user interface is similar to the desktop experience for YouTube Music and Play Music.
Although some aspects are detailed, several elements are missing from this desktop Web experience. Visiting podcasts.google.com redirects to an About page that describes the service and links to the Android app. Before the website reaches feature parity, a welcome screen and a search are absolutely necessary to easily navigate between shows. For now, users must first get the path from Android, and then manually enter the URL. There is also no way to subscribe on the web.
This current state is a lot reminiscent of the pre-launch experience on Android, with podcasts featuring no home screen and relying on Google search to find new shows.
Thank you Omar!
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