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One of my smarter purchases on the Android Play Store is the upgrade key for BeyondPod. Not because BeyondPod was beautifully designed, but because it was so functional. In the end, BeyondPod showed me the amazing content available in the video and audio podcast world. This is the catalog of my how BeyondPod made me a podcast enthusiast.
How it All Started
Because I'm naturally a skeptic, I started with their free version of BeyondPod. I only purchase apps that are one time fees (which to be honest are most apps) and that I plan on using for a long time (meaning I've tried a free version and vetted it's features). So when I first downloaded BeyondPod, it was before their major interface overhaul. It was ugly, did not have many color, and at first glance a very simple app. The free version of BeyondPod is fully functional for 30 days. After which many features are disabled. Luckily, the 30 day trial was enough for me to fully realize the power of the customizations in BeyondPod.
The Power of Customization
Anything feature I ever dreamed about that would make my life easier is a feature in BeyondPod. Admittingly, there are many options, so finding the right one often requires digging around the setting menu. But when I ultimately find the correct menu, the automation I gain makes my everyday life easier. Some examples of the customization:
Add any feed you want, whether it be audio or video.
Set an auto-download schedule based not only on WiFi/3G/4G status, charging status, day of the week, time, and many more options.
Set the number of automatically downloaded episodes you want to keep locally on your device based on the feed. Anything over that will be automatically deleted.
Have newly downloaded episodes automatically added to the smart playlist.
Ability to display playback options in the notification area.
How BeyondPod Changed Everything
When I finally completed customizing BeyondPod and adding feeds of my interest, I painlessly began receiving podcasts. In my area, the Sprint network does not have the most stellar track record. While on the road, my data signal drops in and out, so Sprint's data network is not optimal for streaming. But BeyondPod changed that; I didn't need to depend on Sprint anymore. I began listening to podcasts while driving to work, mowing the lawn, sitting out on the deck, and anytime I had free time. You can even use ChromeCast and stream video straight to your TV.
So There's Free, and There's Paid
I purchased BeyondPod Unlock Key back in May 2014 for $2.99 (and I don't remember if they were running a promotion). Thinking back, the automation BeyondPod offers is worth every bit of the $2.99 price. Unfortunately, the current price for the BeyondPod Unlock Key as of March 2015 is now $6.99. If I were looking for a Podcast today, this new price is likely to have me searching for alternatives. Even other automation apps like Tasker (another awesome app), is only $2.99.
Sum it All Up
Partially due to luck and my love for deciphering complex menus, I've become an avid user of BeyondPod. It's a great replacement to music on the radio or streamed over Spotify. If i want to continue streaming, I'll have to either switch to a more reliable network like Verizon and pay a higher premium. The price to upgrade to PRO, even at $6.99 is a one-time charge and will save you time and energy, which are the two most important assets. If you're not sold, give the free version of BeyondPod a try for 30 days. Visit their official website at BeyondPod or Google Play (Beyond Pod).