How to Use Your Amazon Echo to Listen to Podcasts

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You can listen to music on your Amazon Echo, but if you’re a podcast fan and want to access your favorite episodes through Alexa, you have Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Pandora, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and SiriusXM to choose from. Here’s how to link them up.

Organize Music Services

Your first duty is to add and link the various podcasting services. On your phone or tablet, launch the Alexa app. Go to Settings > Music & Podcasts > Link New Service by tapping the More symbol in the bottom toolbar. Select a service, such as Apple Podcasts, to which you want to subscribe.

connect account with amazon screen

Toggle the Enable to Use switch on. After that, you’ll be prompted to sign into the service in order to link your Amazon account. Sign in, then tap the button to provide access before tapping Done.

Return to the previous screen to add any additional services to your Alexa device. This will allow you to listen to podcasts from a variety of sources.

Although the service may display in the list below the Link New Service button in some circumstances, this does not always imply that you have access to the app. If you find yourself in this circumstance, select a service from the list and log in.

Configure a Default Podcast Service

After that, you’ll want to make a specific service the default podcast source, so you don’t have to tell Alexa which one to use when you ask for a podcast.

If you set Apple Podcasts as your default for podcasts, for example, you can simply say “Alexa, play the current episode of ‘Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend,’” and Alexa will play it from Apple Podcasts. You’ll need to say “Alexa, play the latest episode of ‘Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend’ from Apple Podcasts” if this isn’t the default service.

set default service in alexa app

To change the default, click to Settings > Music & Podcasts > Default Services, then press the Change link under the Podcasts section and choose the service you wish to use.

You can now ask Alexa to play specific podcasts or episodes of podcasts. When you say something like “Alexa, play ‘Conan O’Brien Needs a Friend,’” Alexa will automatically play the most recent episode. However, you may not want to listen to the most recent episode in some instances.

Say “Alexa, previous episode” when Alexa begins playing the most recent episode. Alexa will then begin playing the previous one. This command can be repeated to go back one episode at a time. You can pause or end an episode at any time after you’ve finished listening to it. When you ask Alexa to play that episode again, it will pick up right where you left off.

Spotify, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and Pandora all provide the same commands.

Listen to Podcasts

Are you looking for a few fantastic podcasts to listen to? You can search for podcast providers like Stitcher, Luminary, and Pockets Casts, as well as individual podcasts, using the Alexa app. Go to Skills & Games > Categories > Music & Audio by tapping the More icon. Under the Podcasts Skills portion of the website, tap the See More Link. Swipe through the list of Podcast Skills and tap any that catch your eye.

Another option is to conduct your own search for podcasts. Tap the Search icon on the Skills & Games screen and put “podcasts” into the search area. You can now scroll through the list and select any podcast skill that piques your attention.

local radio options for iHeartRadio and TuneIn

Certain supported providers, such as iHeartRadio and TuneIn, allow you to search for certain podcasts. Tap the Play button at the bottom of the Alexa app to enter the Entertainment screen, which displays songs you’ve recently played as well as music and audiobooks you may access. Swipe down the screen to find the iHeartRadio and TuneIn Local Radio sections. Select the Browse option.

Swipe through the thumbnails of the podcasts in the Featured Podcasts area, or press the See All link if it displays. The screen shows a selection of iHeartRadio podcasts.

If you prefer TuneIn, go to the Entertainment screen and select the TuneIn Local Radio area from the Browse link. Tap the See All link for This Week’s Top 25 Podcasts on the TuneIn screen.

You may also ask Alexa to play certain podcasts by opening the dedicated mobile app for each podcast service—Apple Podcasts, Pandora, Spotify, iHeartRadio, and TuneIn—and browsing and searching for them.

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