8 Best CarPlay Podcast Apps To Use on the Road (2022)

best carplay podcast apps - featured image

If you own an iPhone and a car and enjoy listening to podcasts while driving, CarPlay is your best friend.

It makes it so easy to listen to whatever you want without being distracted by your phone.

Most podcast apps are now available in CarPlay, but some are better than others.

The best CarPlay podcast apps to use while driving are Apple Podcast, Spotify, Stitcher, Overcast, and Castro, among others. These apps are available on iOS and CarPlay, offering hundreds of thousands of podcasts at high quality and multiple options for improving your user experience.

Overall best: Apple Podcast App

Top Apple CarPlay Podcast Apps

Let’s see what makes these podcast apps stand out among the others and what pros and cons each have.

I’ll also give you more information on the cost, catalog, and much more, so stick around!

1. Apple Podcast

apple carplay podcast app - listen now screen

Here’s a summary of this app:

  • Cost: Free, but certain podcasts have paywalls
  • Catalog: 250,000
  • Best feature: suitable for iPhones
  • Room for improvement: only available on iOS

 

Apple podcasts carplay app - browse screen

The app’s design is pretty good, with three tabs (listen now, browse, and library), giving you plenty of options to find, organize, and save your favorite podcasts.

For instance, the options on the menu at the bottom help you continue where you left off with a podcast, search for a specific podcast, or browse the most popular ones in every category.

Additionally, the vast majority of creators will upload to the Apple podcast app, so you have no worries about them dropping the show on this platform.

apple podcasts app - library screen 2

I personally wouldn’t pick any other, unless you already have a subscription to Spotify, for example.

You don’t need to worry about downloading this app, as it will already be on your device.

2. Audible

audible carplay podcast app - podcasts screen

Audible has the following features:

  • Cost: Free, $8/month, $15/month
  • Catalog: 100,000
  • Best feature: great rating system 
  • Room for improvement: limited content for free subscribers

 

Although it’s an audiobook-centric app, Audible also features plenty of podcasts you can listen to on CarPlay.

You can find thousands of options in the Podcasts category of the app, including exclusive shows for Audible.

Audible’s interface is user-friendly, making it easy for you to find podcasts you might like. This app features a good rating and reviewing system that can help you decide what you want to watch.

You can also listen to podcasts while you’re offline or download new episodes of your saved podcasts as soon as they’re out.

Audible is obviously more well-known for its books, which is a great option for this too. If this interests you, check out my article on the Audible CarPlay app

Download: Audible App of the app store.

3. Spotify

spotify carplay podcast app - now playing screen

If you want to use the Spotify CarPlay app, here are some things to consider:

  • Cost: Free, $10/month for premium subscription
  • Catalog: 4,000,000+
  • Best feature: good discovery options
  • Room for improvement: too limited for free users

 

Spotify is quite famous for music streaming (and a top CarPlay Music app), but it also offers a wide variety of podcasts, available on CarPlay as well.

Because it’s a large platform, Spotify has an impressive catalog that offers podcasts on various topics.

More importantly, it has a great discovery system that allows you to search and receive recommendations about everything you’re interested in.

Another undervalued aspect of Spotify is that it incorporates social media elements, adding interaction to the user experience. 

Spotify is in the top 3 because of its exclusive podcasts (originals), such as the Joe Rogan podcast and the Fella’s podcast.

However, I was disappointed with the user interface for podcasts via CarPlay as they aren’t present. Instead, you have to queue them through your phone, as seen below:

spotify app on iphone showing podcasts

Download: The Spotify App off the app store.

4. Stitcher

Stitcher offers the following features:

  • Cost: Free, $5/month
  • Catalog: 460,000
  • Best feature: timely updates
  • Room for improvement: search function

 

Stitcher is another good podcast app to use on CarPlay while you’re on the road.

This app is dedicated to podcasts and focuses on creating and personalizing playlists, enabling the app to offer you suitable suggestions.

Stitcher also has exclusive shows in its catalog.

Furthermore, you get notified every time a podcast on your list uploads a new episode on Stitcher.

You also get plenty of options for skipping, rewinding, or fast-forwarding, from seconds to minutes.

Downloading podcasts is also available. Stitcher is a good choice for people who listen to multiple podcasts throughout the day.

Download: The Stitcher app off the app store.

5. TuneIn Radio

Tunein radio apple carplay podcast app

TuneIn CarPlay Radio app offers these to its subscribers:

  • Cost: Free, $10/month
  • Catalog: 4,000,000
  • Best feature: international radio streams in addition to podcasts
  • Room for improvement: limited options in the free version

 

carplay podcast apps - tunein radio - popular in your area screen

TuneIn is available on CarPlay and offers podcasts as well as radio streams from different countries. Our top CarPlay radio app.

With an extensive catalog, it includes the most popular podcasts and many more others, although it doesn’t produce any TuneIn exclusive podcasts.

Like other apps, it’s got some playback options, although limited; you can only rewind or fast forward by 30 seconds.

Moreover, you can select podcasts you want to listen to later or set a sleep timer.

TuneIn is a minimalist but adequate app with a lot to offer, perfect for casual podcast listeners who prefer variety.

Download: TuneIn Radio app via the app store.

6. Overcast

Along with the cost, here are some things to remember about Overcast:

  • Cost: Free, $10/year
  • Catalog: 250,000
  • Best feature: Smart Speed/Voice Boost
  • Room for improvement: limited options in the free version

 

Overcast is a crowd favorite when it comes to podcasts.

It became pretty popular almost ten years ago, and it remains one of the best apps solely dedicated to podcasts.

Overcast has a user-friendly interface with suitable options for discovery and recommendations among thousands of podcasts.

Naturally, it’s available on CarPlay, and it’s a popular choice for people who listen to podcasts on the road.

There are two features that Overcast is well known for.

First, the Smart Speed option allows you to speed up periods of silence in a podcast without distorting the other parts, unlike regular speed-up options.

Overcast was one of the first apps that included this option.

Additionally, Overcast offers Voice Boost, a feature that enhances the sounds of podcasts so that you can hear them better, even in noisy situations, like when you’re driving.

Download: The Overcast app via the app store.

7. PocketCasts

Here is a summary of PocketCasts:

  • Cost: Free, $10/year
  • Catalog: a few hundred thousand
  • Best feature: user-friendly interface
  • Room for improvement: subscription needed to listen to a single episode

 

PocketCasts is known for being one of the first podcast apps for iPhone and for having a fun and aesthetically pleasing design.

It offers plenty of options to make your listening experience as easy as possible and is excellent to use on CarPlay.

Like Overcast, PocketCasts also offers its version of Smart Speed, speed trimming, which reduces periods of silence during podcasts.

It also provides voice boost and a variety of playback options and speeds.

Additionally, PocketCasts helps you make personalized lists using different filters.

Download: The PocketCasts app via the app store.

8. Castro

castro CarPlay podcast app - home screen

You can use this app, but remember the following:

  • Cost: Free, $19/year
  • Catalog: a few hundred thousand
  • Best feature: user-friendly interface
  • Room for improvement: only available on iPhones

 

Castro is a good choice for an avid podcast listener who listens to daily episodes everywhere they can, including in their car.

Castro notifies you whenever a new episode comes out.

You can choose whether you want to queue it immediately; you also have the option of auto queue for your favorite podcasts.

This way, you can listen to the new episodes daily in your car using Castro on CarPlay.

Castro’s design is sleek and simplistic, offering various helpful options.

Like the apps above, Castro offers trim silence and voice-boosting options, but they are only available to paying subscribers

Download: The Castro app via the app store.

Alex
Alex

I loved my car but was frustrated with my media system. So I upgraded my stereo, making silly wires and precarious phone mounts a thing of the past. The Apple Car Play stereo was so good I wanted to show more people how this could be done and truly upgrade their cars multimedia system!

Founder
StereoUpgrade.com

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