In this article I will outline step-by-step how to add a podcast, like the Windows Phone Radio podcast, to your Windows Phone 7 device or Zune. In this tutorial I will add the Windows Phone Radio podcast to the Zune software and let the weekly episodes automatically sync with my Zune HD.
“Each week, since October 1st 2010, Matt Akers (@skipdeez) and Brian Seitz (@brianseitz) will record and release a new podcast episode featuring behind the scenes information and conversation with key personalities inside Microsoft and our partner friends, regarding Windows Phone !”
Podcasts in Zune Marketplace
Last week I shared a closer look at Zune software 4.7, that included features for Windows Phone 7. Each Windows Phone 7 device is effectively a Zune mediaplayer (with comparable software onboard like the Zune HD).
The screenshot above shows you an overview of the Zune Marketplace, with the section podcasts on the second row from the navigation “breadcrumbs”. You can purchase and download podcasts from this section from the Zune Marketplace or use your ZunePass.
On the left you can see the different genres to easily navigate through the database with podcasts ! On the upper right you can see the search box, which simply allows you to search for a podcast or podcast series. On the bottom right you can see the most subscribed to podcasts.
There are two ways to add your favorite podcasts to the Zune software and sync these to Windows Phone 7 or Zune HD !
Add a favorite podcast to your Zune collection manually
The first option to add your favorite podcast is manually adding it to the Zune software. You navigate to collection in the upper navigation bar and select podcasts from the navigation bar below (collection – podcasts).
You can see the text “You have no podcasts in your collection” and just below the text ”add a favorite podcast” which you need to click !
A subscribe pop-up window opens, with a field where you need to enter the URL of the podcast series. The screenshot above shows this step with the URL of the Windows Phone Radio series entered:
Unfortunately some podcasts only seem to be available through iTunes. Tom Verhoeff, Student CS @ TU Delft, Microsoft Student Partner, has written an article on his blog about subscribing to iTunes podcasts in the Zune software. The same option of manually adding a podcast is used in this article !
Search for podcasts in Zune Marketplace
The second option to add your favorite podcast is to search for it from the search box in the upper right corner of the Zune software. The screenshot above shows the results of the search query “Windows Phone Radio”.
When you hit the search button the Zune software will both search through your collection as well as in the Zune Marketplace.
The search option is probably the easiest way to add a podcast, but as you could read above it is sometimes a necessity to add the podcasts manually !
The screenshot above shows the added Windows Phone Radio podcast series. On the left you can see the podcast series listed, and when you are subscribed to more series you will see those here.
In the screenshot I have selected the Windows Phone Radio podcast series, while you can see the episodes in the middle main-part of the Zune software. Episode 4, 3, and 2 are being downloaded. Remark the red progress bars !
Furthermore you can read the details of the podcast series in the right column. In the screenshot above you can read some background information and details about the Windows Phone Radio podcast series.
The screenshot above shows the Windows Phone Radio podcast series, with Episode 2, 3, and 4 downloaded to my collection. However you might ask yourself why is episode 1 not downloaded, given the download-button behind the episode.
On the bottom of the right column you can see two buttons: (1) unsubscribe, and (2) series settings.
Podcast series settings - Set your playback and sync preferences !
The screenshot above shows you the series settings window of the Windows Phone Radio series. The first heading is called episodes, and the slider controls the number of episodes that are downloaded to the collection. You can see “keep 3 episodes of this podcasts“.
The second heading is labeled playback order, where you can choose between the newest episode first or the oldest episode first. The third heading allows you to configure the syncing options. Sync all unplayed and partially played episodes is selected here.
Overall thoughts and wrap-up
I hope that this how to tutorial provides insights in the different ways to add podcasts to your Windows Phone 7 device or Zune HD mediaplayer. While the search option is the easiest way, it is sometimes inevitable to add the URL of the podcast manually. Remark the article of Tom Verhoeff, Student CS @ TU Delft, Microsoft Student Partner.
Enjoy your favorite podcasts on the go !