Test Drive: Podchaser makes a shaky entry into the podcast database world

Today’s Test Drive explores a tech niche that has been getting lots of buzz lately: podcast discovery. With the audio format on the rise in cultural cache and audience numbers, it makes sense that new properties would emerge to offer additional services to listeners. One of these is Podchaser, a podcast discovery tool currently in open beta and has more than 18 million podcast episodes. The theory of a massive podcast database that’s searchable and filterable is an admirable one, but Podchaser still has some big wrinkles to iron out. Continue Reading


Test Drive: Finding new podcast treats with Audiosear.ch discovery

Discovery has been a topic of great interest to the podcast creator and producer community, with top minds of the industry looking for better ways to get shows to the ears of excited listeners. Several companies and hosts are working on solutions to the problem, but some of the most promising answers have emerged from totally new startups. One such fresh endeavor is Audiosear.ch. Its discovery tools scale well to accommodate both new and veteran podcast listeners, and the initial trial of using it shows a tool with lots of promise. Continue Reading


Test Drive: RadioPublic delivers loads of free podcasts, but for who?

Podcasting is in a boom, but the audio format still has a long way to go before achieving mainstream familiarity. Tools like RadioPublic seem designed to be an entry point into podcasting by making the discovery process simpler for a newbie listener. The question is whether this app can succeed in reaching them. Continue Reading


Test Drive: Spotify launches Release Radar, an extension of Discover Weekly

Spotify has launched a new personalized playlist feature, Release Radar, which appears in every user’s Browse section. Release Radar is Spotify’s first expansion of the technology which powers Discover Weekly, an unquestionable hit with users and a triumph of algorithmic music curation. RAIN’s Anna Washenko and Brad Hill take Release Radar for a spin, and share their impressions. Continue Reading


Test Drive: Newest version of NPR One adds excellent options

The last time we took a close look at NPR One, the innovative audio mobile app from the public broadcaster, was right at its launch. The app has kicked off the new year with an update that beefs up the browsing and discovery options. Version 1.6 adds a fresh layer of personalization and flexibility to the already excellent app. Continue Reading