Managing podcast synchronization
Ask iLounge offers readers the opportunity to get answers to their iPod-, iPhone-, iPad-, iTunes-, or Apple TV-related questions from a member of the iLounge editorial team. We'll answer several questions here each week, and of course, you can always get help with more immediate concerns from the iLounge Discussion Forums. Submit your questions for consideration using our Ask iLounge Submit Form. We reserve the right to edit questions for grammar, spelling, and length.
Q: I download podcasts frequently, yet add them to my iPod infrequently. At the moment, I do this manually by dragging all the podcast files onto the iPod icon. However whenever I do this, all podcasts previously listed as played become listed as unplayed, so I lose track of where I was up to. Is there a way to set up iTunes to read your iPod to show which tracks have been played and which haven’t, and update accordingly? I would prefer not to automatically sync the podcasts, I prefer to do it manually to keep favourite episodes on the player.
A: Unfortunately, when managing your iPod in manual mode, information such as ratings, play counts, last played times, and bookmarked positions are not transferred back to the iTunes library. As a result, if you re-transfer any existing content from your iTunes library to your iPod, playback positions and played status will be overwritten based on the settings in your iTunes library.
The best workaround to avoid this situation is to go back to automatically syncing your podcasts, but in this case do so based on playlists rather than using the “Podcast” settings in iTunes. In other words, you would leave the sync settings on the “Podcasts” tab disabled, and instead create a playlist or set of playlists containing the podcasts that you wish to have on your iPod. You would then set your iPod to sync these selected playlists on the “Music” tab, where they will be handled in the same manner as any other audio files.
You could then simply add and remove podcasts from within these playlists to control which ones are stored on your iPod. Podcast episodes added to the playlist will be added to your iPod during the next sync, and podcasts removed from these playlists would be removed from the iPod. Further, as you listen to podcasts on the iPod, playback positions and play counts will synchronize back to your iTunes library, allowing you to retain your playback positions and keep track of which podcasts you have listened to.
There are a couple of caveats to this method, however: Firstly, not all iPod models will display these Podcasts under the “Podcast” menu. This is particularly true of the newer iPod classic and iPod nano. In this case, you will simply have to access the Podcasts via the playlist(s) that you have created, which unfortunately will not provide indications on which episodes you may have already listened to (ie, no blue dots).
Secondly, this method will not work for video podcasts, as these are treated differently than audio podcasts by iTunes. Our testing has shown some limited success with syncing these through the “Movies” tab by using video playlists, but this behavior seems inconsistent at this point.
- Will removing a credit card from Safari also remove it from Apple Pay?
- Can I mute Handoff calls coming into my Mac from my iPhone?
- How do I keep my iPhone calls from ringing on my Mac?
- Why doesn’t Traffic show up on my Today Notifications Screen?
- Why doesn’t my iPhone reconnect to Wi-Fi after I turn it on?
- Why can’t I see the iPad-style landscape view on my iPhone 6 Plus?
- Apple ‘working rapidly’ to extend Apple Pay to more countries
- Report: Apple’s Siri-based Amazon Echo competitor will be a new Apple TV
- Report: Apple SVP Eddy Cue proposed bid to buy Time Warner
- Beta testing for Pokémon GO begins in the U.S.
- Apple’s plan to open stores in India hits a snag (Update: India’s finance minister ratifies ruling)
- Apple looking into charging stations for electric cars
- Apple hires hint at improvements in encryption, health monitoring
- Hyundai adds CarPlay support to more vehicles
- Plaintiffs file new motion to keep ‘Error 53’ Touch ID lawsuit alive
- Report: Apple developing Siri home speaker to rival Amazon’s Echo; will release Siri SDK at WWDC
- OtterBox Symmetry Series Hybrid Case for 12.9” iPad Pro
- Logitech Logi BASE Charging Stand for iPad Pro
- Twelve South TimePorter for Apple Watch
- August Doorbell Cam
- August Smart Lock HomeKit enabled + Smart Keypad
- ecobee3 HomeKit-enabled smart Wi-Fi thermostat
- Zagg Now Cam
- Yantouch EyE Portable Wireless Speaker
- Netatmo Wind Gauge
- Incipio Stashback for iPhone 6/6s
- Filling the Gap: A look at third-party HomeKit apps
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of tvOS 9.2
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.3
- Opinion: Why Apple needs a dedicated HomeKit app
- Inside the betas: What’s new in iOS 9.3 and tvOS 9.2 (Updated)
- Life with HomeKit: Our experiences with Apple’s home automation system
- Under the Radar: 10 ‘hidden’ details about the new Apple TV
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.0
- Under the Radar: A closer look at smaller iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus changes
- A First Look at iOS 9’s Transit in Apple Maps (Updated for watchOS 2)