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How to disable automatic downloads in the Podcasts app on iPhone and iPad

How to disable automatic downloads in the Podcasts app on iPhone and iPad

Source: Luke Filipowicz/ComoHow

Whatever you’re into, you’ll probably find a podcast for it. After all, there are plenty of podcasts for just about everything, whether it’s technology or world news, immersive storytelling experiences, or just a laugh. Podcasts are great for everyone, and there is sure to be at least one podcast that you enjoy.

While there are plenty of third-party podcast app alternatives, you can also stick with Apple’s Podcasts app, which is already built right into your best iPhone. However, you may experience automatic downloads of podcast episodes you already follow, and if you have an iPhone with basic storage, this eats up your available storage! Here’s how to turn off automatic downloads in the Podcasts app on iPhone and iPad.

Table of Contents:

How to disable automatic downloads for the Podcasts app

  • Launch Settings on your iPhone or iPad.
  • Scroll down and tap Podcasts.
  • Scroll down a bit and tap the switch to Enable Tracking to OFF (grey).

    Source: HowHow

  • Optionally, if you choose to allow automatic downloads, there is a new option just above Enable during tracking to allow on mobile. If you go this route, make sure you have enough data on your cellular plan to do so, as those overage charges can add up!

    What happened to subscriptions?

    If you’ve been using the Podcasts app for a while, you may have noticed that you no longer “subscribe” to a podcast, but rather “follow” it. That’s because Apple introduced podcast subscriptions, which launched in 2021 in more than 170 countries early on.

    Now, when you “subscribe” to a podcast, you get exclusive bonus content and the cost of the subscription depends on the content producers. With the podcast subscription feature, content creators can offer sponsor-free versions, exclusive episodes, and even early access to content for subscribers.

    Don’t worry, though: podcast subscriptions are optional, so you don’t have to worry about having to pay for all your current favorites. You will be able to choose which podcasts you want to subscribe to for additional content. And if you do end up subscribing to a podcast, podcast subscriptions support family sharing, so you can share that single subscription with up to six other people.

    For those wondering how much a podcast subscription costs, well, that’s entirely up to the creators. If creators already have some kind of membership program for listeners, it may be similar, though Apple will take a 30% discount on those subscriptions, and creators must pay $20 per year to access podcast subscription features. The result may end up being a bit higher than if you had to pay content creators directly, since they have to offset those fees from Apple one way or another.

    Download your podcasts whenever you want

    Podcasts are great, but it’s better to download what you need at your own pace, rather than having automatic downloads and eating up your cellular data and device space. After all, unless you have the 1TB iPhone 13 Pro, space is a precious commodity and shouldn’t be wasted on something you don’t want.

    May 2022 Update: Update for iOS 15.

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