A few years ago Apple added podcasts to the iTunes store and the iPod/Music app in iOS devices. Now it looks like the company might be moving podcasts to their own app in iOS 6.
According to All Things D, Apple removed the podcasts section in iTunes in iOS 6. Beta users cannot search for podcasts in the iTunes app in iOS 6, but they are able to download more episodes of their favorite podcasts in the Music app.
The removal of the section doesn’t mean Apple is getting rid of podcasts like it’s killing off Ping. Instead it means Apple is giving podcasts their own app. The new app will be a part of the final version of iOS 6. It will give users access to all of their podcasts and let them discover other podcasts.
We hope the new app will work more like third-party podcast apps like Downcast and Instacast. Those apps can automatically download new episodes of podcasts as the arrive in feeds. The current Music app links users to the iTunes store where they have to manually download individual podcasts. It’s not a very user-friendly system, and is likely why many users rely on other podcast apps on iOS.
In iOS 5, Apple broke up the iPod app into Music and Videos. Then, a few months ago, it released a dedicated app for iTunes U. Pulling podcasts out of the iTunes store and the Music app would make iTunes less bloated, which is nice. Unfortunately the change won’t remove podcasts from the desktop iTunes app, which is much more bloated than the iOS app.