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How To Use Alexa To Play Podcasts On Amazon Echo

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You likely already know that the Echo (and for that matter, Alexa) can play music pretty easily. But what about other forms of audio. Like say a podcast? Well Alexa can also play podcasts on your Echo device, as well as other Alexa-compatible devices quite easily. So you can catch up with your favorite podcasts pretty easily.

Today, we’ll show you how easy it is to play podcasts on your Alexa device, like an Echo, with a number of different services. Including Amazon Music, Apple Music, Spotify, TuneIn, Pocket Casts and more.

Amazon Music HD

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Play Podcasts on Alexa via Amazon Music

This is probably the easiest way to listen to podcasts on your Alexa device. Since it will default to Amazon Music anyways. Just ask Alexa to play a podcast, and if you don’t specify the service, it will play through Amazon Music.

This also works on other Alexa devices, like those from Sonos, Ultimate Ears, and others. Without any additional things needing to be done.

Play Podcasts on Alexa via Apple Music

For Apple Music, the skill will be auto-enabled on the first time you use Apple Music on any Alexa device. So there’s no skill that needs to be enabled and set up.

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Simply tell Alexa to play a podcast from Apple Music, and you’re all set.

Play Podcasts on Alexa via Spotify

If you already use Spotify to listen to music on your Alexa speakers, then you’re all set. As you’ll be using the same Spotify skill to listen to podcasts on your Echo device here.

Additionally, since Spotify Connect exists, you can use the Spotify app on any other device, and choose your Echo device to play the podcast on. And you’re all set.

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Play Podcasts on Alexa via TuneIn

TuneIn isn’t really the most popular app for podcasts, or really anything audio period. But it is available on Alexa. And it doesn’t require any skills being enabled.

Just head into the Amazon Alexa app, and then head to the Entertainment section. It will then be listed among the top music services of the screen. Once you are in the podcast section, you can then search for what you want to subscribe to. It’s one of the few apps that works within the Alexa app. So you don’t necessarily need to download the TuneIn app.

Pocket Casts November 2018 overhaul 10
Pocket Casts November 2018 overhaul 10

Play Podcasts on Pocket Casts

You can download the Pocket Casts skill from the Alexa Skill store and listen to podcasts via Pocket Casts on your Echo device. Which is one of the most popular podcast catcher apps on the market, for many years now. The skill launched in 2019, so it’s still fairly new. It’s not quite as stable and slick as Spotify, Apple Music or Amazon Music is. But those are also bigger companies that can spend more on developing their Alexa skill.

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There are some cool voice commands that you can use with Amazon Alexa and Pocket Casts to play your podcasts too:

Play a podcast: “Alexa, ask Pocket Casts to play [name of podcast].”

Subscribe to a podcast: “Alexa, ask Pocket Casts to subscribe to [name of podcast].”

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Get a recommendation: “Alexa, ask Pocket Casts to give me a recommendation.

These will also work with other skills, just swap out “Pocket Casts” for another app or skill.

How to Add Podcasts to Alexa Routines

If you listen to podcasts everyday, maybe while you’re working from home, you can use Alexa Routines to automatically play a podcast without giving multiple commands.

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So you could use a command for going to work. Which could adjust the lights in your home office, turn on your favorite podcast, and even do more.

It is a bit strange to add a podcast to a Routine though, right now. As you need to use the TuneIn skill, at least for now.

So you’ll need to go to the app, choose Routines.

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Then tap on Start a new Routine, and choose the command you’ll give Alexa.

Now go to Music and type the name of the podcast you want to play, and then choose TuneIn as the provider.

Then you can save the Routine.

Now when you give Alexa that routine, it will automatically play that podcast. It’s a good idea to use a podcast that releases a new episode daily, or several times a week. So that there is always a new episode available.

And that’s about it for setting up routines with podcasts on Alexa.

Wrap Up

That’s just how easy it is to play podcasts on an Alexa speaker like an Echo. While it’s not quite the same for every podcast app or service, it is possible with all of these. We still believe that Spotify is the easiest way to listen to podcasts on your Echo device. And the reason for this is because of Spotify Connect. You don’t even need to use Alexa to play Spotify podcasts on your Echo. Just click or tap on your speaker or smart display in the Spotify Connect Menu and you’re all set.

Amazon Music is the other great way to listen to podcasts, since it is fully supported by Alexa. Which isn’t a huge surprise seeing as it is owned by Amazon, so it’s much easier to get it working with Alexa.

But with the popularity of podcasts these days, we’ll likely see even more skills coming to Alexa.