The update fixed most of the problems - *except* the annoying autoplay behavior where it just goes right to the next episode at the end of the one you're listening to. This is in list view, of course, I don't know what the behavior is in the My Podcasts view.
The other thing I finally noticed about the original update was that only *some* of the podcasts were deleting/redownloading constantly and some of them were not. Sorry to be so slow on the uptake, those of you who already noted this upthread. I wonder if there was some RSS setting or something that was true about some feeds and not about others which iTunes was misreading/mishandling.
Anyway, I'm not one of the people who threw up my hands and said I'M NEVER USING APPLE FOR PODCASTS AGAIN! I had some faith that they would work these issues out, and they mostly have. However, I still can't escape this sinking feeling that Apple has even more changes for podcasts and their consumption planned for rollout in the next few years that I don't think I'm going to like.
I'm afraid I finally am one of the people throwing up his hands and swearing off Apple products. I've been a Maquista since 1995, and the forced paradigm shifts are just wearing me out. This fixing the heck out of iTune's unbroken podcast management is just the final straw. Another poster suggested he (or she?) was questioning his/her loyalty to the entire Mac platform, and I'm there now, too. This petulant refusal to meet the needs of its tiny band of long-suffering, diehard users is just very, very bad business. Unfortunately, the computer world is like US politics: artificially limited to two substantially identical choices. So now I've gone from evangelical zealot to "using a Mac because it's what's on my desk at the moment".
iTunes is a flagship Apple product. Over the years they've inexplicably shifted stuff around and invented "new" features that were more annoying than functional and eliminated certain kinds of functionality (i.e., MIDI conversion) that I missed, but had to admit were no longer vital. But now they've essentially sliced off a giant chunk of _fundamental service_, as if your Wifi company limited your access to a few rooms of your house, that _it_ chose. Are podcasts back again with 11.1.1? Sounds like they may partly be. (Though not for me, with my old Nano, apparently.)
A better question is, why am I wasting my time on completely gratuitous aggravation? Better business would be to invest a few bucks in a non-Apple competitor and see if they treat me any better.
And maybe talk to that friend who's been trying to get me into Linux for ten years now.
Lost in Asia:
Not when the iPhone is plugged in - at that point, the content copies over. I suppose I could turn off syncing altogether, but I don't want to do that: my music smart playlists are probably even more convoluted than my podcast ones, with all kinds of fancy ways to get recently-unplayed songs on the iPhone.
If you mind my asking, what's the podcast that's giving you trouble? I can try subscribing and see if I have the same issues.
Thanks for offering, but I think it may be fixed. It's The Economist (all audio) podcast, but it seems to be stable now. Many moving parts the last few days, could have been a legitimate problem, or maybe it was just me.
Regarding the transfer issue, what I meant was, couldn't you click on the device, then "Podcasts" then uncheck "Sync Podcasts?" That would leave music syncing intact but prevent podcasts being transferred from the phone to the computer. At the moment I'm set up with podcast subscriptions synced but syncing of the podcasts themselves disabled. It works exactly as expected, with the podcasts showing up in both places independently, and no copying of downloaded podcasts in either direction. I'm not as far along as you in implementing a solution, so I still have an unholy mess to clean up on the computer, but at least they are not fighting with each other any more.
May be a moot point with the iTunes 11.1 update, since that seems to have solved many problems. I'm looking forward to experimenting this weekend to see if I can reconstitute anything resembling my old system. The new paradigm has some nice benefits (and the Podcast app is much improved despite my problems,) and if I squint hard enough and look deep into the mist, I can just about make out a future that's actually better than the past--if all the new features worked perfectly as advertized.
But for now, we must remain vigilant for witches.
Ah well. Syncing is still broken. Lost a bunch of unplayed podcasts off the iPhone this morning upon plugging it in to the computer. I have no idea why. Fortunately it was only current episodes, and not from the archive of podcasts (and I continue to be really glad that I immediately retag any podcast I want to keep as "Media Tag = Audiobook), but it's a pain - it shouldn't take so much work and bookkeeping to keep track of what I want to listen to.
Boy I miss 2009, or whenever it was that podcasts behaved as expected. Mind you, I don't think over-the-air sync has ever really worked, but at least then when I plugged the iPod or iPhone in, everything did what I wanted it to.
Syncing still broken, indeed. When I tried to sync for the first time in a week yesterday, it reset all the play counts so every podcast shows as unplayed, episodes I thought were gone from the devices and iTunes suddenly showed up again, and one particular podcast decided to download 78 old episodes.
Witches, I say. It is the only logical explanation.
OMG it's still broken! Had a moment of great happiness when I was able to set up a new smartlist for podcasts, it seemed to work as items appeared in the list and then...nothing. New downloads are not synching to the smartlist.
I was thinking imps or fairies, but now I'm with you...witches. Or maybe Goblins. Can't think about it, need to go sort out my smart list.
I use iTunes only to manage my podcasts. I mainly use the list view. I unchecked "Sync podcast subscriptions and settings" in iTunes-Settings, that's important!
In the Podcasts-App, I don't manage anything (no subscriptions there, keep all episodes, no automatic download).
This way it works out quite well (apart from missing show notes in some cases)!
Lost in Asia wrote:
One general tip: iTunes is treating partially played podcasts almost as if they were played - they've still got that blue semi-circle, but often they're not showing up in lists, and iTunes seems to feel "freer" to delete them. So if you want to keep a podcast, setting it to Unplayed, or resetting plays, may help.
Just found this one myself in 184.108.40.206 - my sync was set to automatically delete played podcasts. I was in the middle of listening to one, so it was only partly played and shouldn't have been deleted. But my recent sync deleted a part-played podcast - weirdly, not all of them (I have about 3 I'e partially listened to) but just the one I was actually listening to last. Not a big deal for me to recover but it's just another screw up in iTunes Podcast section, which is rapidly becoming unusable.
Those of you that continue to fight Apple's decision to divorce podcasts from music, may be interested in a post I did on my own blog entitled "How to create a playlist of podcasts on IOS 7" http://garethhowell.com/wp/podcast-playlists-ios-7/
My motivation was to re-create the ability to switch on "Music" and have a playlist of unplayed podcast episodes in date order; thus avoiding the need to interact with my iPhone whilst I was driving. If you'd like to do the sam, go take a look. I've recently updated the post to cure iTunes' insistence on re-downloading episodes once they have been converted to media type = music.
Thanks Guff, nice blog. The cut-and-paste thing is clever. Lost-in-Asia could probably use that as a shortcut in his solution too.
As for me, I've made the strategic decision that I can't invest any more time in designing work-arounds for this new paradigm and/or being Apple's beta tester. I disabled iCloud subscriptions sync, turned off physical podcast syncing and turned off automatic downloading on all devices/computers, so I am limiting myself to the Podcast app on the phone and nothing else. Even that is flawed: every day podcasts I've already listened to show up again, ones I haven't listened to disappear of their own accord, and for some reason the computer is still downloading certain episodes--even though all downloading and syncing is turned off.
Perhaps after a few more iOS/iTunes updates I'll try again, but until they at least fix the bugs and get proper 2-way syncing of play counts working, it's pretty useless.
Even after updating to the latest versions, whenever I delete anything from iTunes (before I delete I refresh within iTunes after making sure the playcount is updated) iTunes then goes out and re-downloads everything again.
I've had it with manually going through 500 podcasts to see which I've listened to.
Guess this software just isn't going to work. Any suggestions on alternate apps?
I found myself to be a bit rude at the Genius Bar last night. Total lack of consideration for non-iOS device users, ie Shuffle, older Touch etc. I have not been this disappointed with Apple in years. Reading through all the posts, especially Lost In Asia, I couldn't help but think that I should go to the Mac App Store and be able to find the Podcast app for OSX that would actually work with the Podcast app for iOS. No such luck.
I'm stymied, I'll just keep reading and waiting. My Shuffle isn't ready to be put out to pasture just yet.
I have a 2005(?) shuffle that I use at the gym. Because why listen to music when you can hear Kermode and Mayo's film reviews while lifting weights.
Anyway, mine has been working OK, but I don't use any automatic handling of the podcasts. I just drag and drop them into the shuffle icon in itunes. Seems to work OK, and for whatever reason it doesnt' bother me to have to do this. I manage podcasts on my computer and on my iphone through automatic updating of playlists...still without the podcast app.
I too do the manual gig with my Shuffle. The problem starts when you sync the Shuffle again, all that partially listened data is lost on the second or third device you bring to the party. Further, on my iPad mini the new ios7 demands use of the Podcast app and that app was completely clueless regarding syncing to iTunes. I'm told at the Genius Bar we are to think of all updates coming wirelessly. Not a good idea for old devices and not a good idea if two devices can't keep up with each other. ITunes was a good middle man but not now.
Ahh, you're a couple of steps ahead of me. I don't sync my shuffle with other playlists or the itunes main ist. I just load some podcasts, listen to them until they're done and then refill maunaully. It acts as a handy signal for when I should recharge as well.
I wish iTunes wasn't so determined to march all of us down a wireless, autoupdating road. I think their commercial need to accelerate product refreshes combined with a desire to match those with software updates has set us on this course. A lot of functionality that was useful to me has been lost already, so I'm clinging on to my manual iTunes management as long as I can.