I’m leery about switching to iTunes 11 after hearing how different it all is. One of the main things I do with iTunes is to listen to podcasts, especially NPR podcasts. As part of me considering the switch, can you step me through the process of subscribing to a podcast?
I don’t know why people are so concerned about the changes in the iTunes 11 user interface, actually. I’ve been using it since it was first released and once you get over the fact that the left column in iTunes has vanished — and it hasn’t! — then it’s pretty darn similar. Just a lot faster and more elegant. And as I said, if you want, you can go to View –> Show Sidebar and bring it back.
Anyway, I hear your concern, and I appreciate that you’re another fan of National Public Radio, one of the few media companies I can think of that has gracefully transitioned into the new world of the Internet. In fact, as an example, we’ll look at subscribing to Science Friday, a program that I bet you already enjoy!
In iTunes 11, the first step to subscribing to a podcast is to find the podcast in the iTunes Store.
In this case, I’ll search for “science friday”…
After a few seconds it shows you all the matches, which is a surprising number of different possibilities for a single NPR podcast:
Look closely and you’ll see you can subscribe to the weekly audio podcast, weekly video podcast, podcast in Spanish or even a program off ABC Radio National from Chris Smith with the confusing name of “Friday Science”. Hard to imagine they’re not tapping into the popularity of the NPR program, but… maybe.
I’m interested in the audio podcast, so I’ll click on the leftmost of the options and reveal specific episodes and dates:
Most importantly, to subscribe to a podcast it’s just like any previous version of iTunes: Click on the “Subscribe” and you’ve subscribed to Science Friday!
Well, not quite…
Now click on “Subscribe” one more time and it’ll immediately download the latest episode and even show you details of previous episodes if you go to the “Podcast” section either on the “Library” menu or, if you’ve opted to show the sidebar, directly on the sidebar:
That’s it. You’ve just subscribed to your favorite NPR podcast in iTunes 11 and lived to tell the tale. Congratulations.