How the iPod Touch UI deals with podcasts... surprisingly bad

Discussion in 'iPod touch Hacks' started by estephan500, Jul 8, 2008.

  1. estephan500 macrumors newbie

    Jul 8, 2008
    For a company famous for incredible interfaces, the way that the iTouch and iPhone handles content that is downloaded as podcasts is really quite bad. This is relevant because many of us are trying to develop the iTouch as a mobile device for learning -- hand a student an iTouch full of 40 hours of video lecturers and presentations and you've got something that can really help a mobile workforce. Apple has pretty much signed onto this with its iTunes U.

    The flaws are:

    -- when content originates as video or audio podcasts (first acquired through iTunes, then synced with the iPod) -- the video podcasts are split into a different section, Videos, while the audio-only podcasts are buried in Music>Podcasts. What is worse, in that music>podcasts area, the VIDEO podcasts ALSO appear, but if a student tries to access the video ones there, they only see the first frame of the video and hear only the soundtrack. Novice users will have no clue that they are just viewing it in the wrong area.

    -- The metadata that is attached to each episode of the video or audio podcast -- the name, description, date, etc... is totally ignored in the iTouch UI -- all the user sees in the list of episodes is the title itself, and only the first 18 minutes of it. We want to make our episodes have a good description of the content, reason for the presentaiton, date etc...

    I'd love it if this was improved in the new version (july 11) but I'm not incredibly optimistic.

    Any thoughts or suggestions?

    thanks --eric
  2. kinchee87 macrumors regular


    Jan 9, 2007
    New Zealand
    Well with the first flaw you mentioned, I don't see it as a flaw. When I'm in music, I expect music and not videos, and when I'm in videos I only expect videos and not music. If the podcast doesn't have an album art, the first frame of the music video is used.

    As for novice users, there is a reason why they are novice. I'm sure with a bit of direction, you can make your students proficient in watching and listening to podcasts on their iPod touches. Never underestimate your student's abilities :p

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