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How to Share Podcasts Between iPad and Mac

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Sharing Podcasts Between iPad and Mac

Want to listen to podcasts on-the-go with your iPad? We all do.

Let’s say you download the podcast you want to listen to on your iPad, but you got home before you had a chance to listen to it. You need to let that charge for work, so now you have your Mac sitting on the desk. How do you get it from one device to the other?

Thankfully there are four different ways you can do it, so let’s take a look at fixing this problem and getting everything back on track. After this, you’ll be able to sync from one to the other without any issues.

Method 1: Sync Apple Podcasts in Settings

Sync Apple Podcasts

Your settings are arguably the best way to sync Apple Podcasts to your device. This means tweaking your device just a little bit so that you can auto sync up as needed. Let’s take a look at how you can do this.

  • In your iPad, go to your “Settings” menu.
  • You’ll see a section titled “Automatic Downloads”. Click on it.
  • There should be an option that says “Enable”, which you want to turn on.

Apple also gives this tip: “To automatically download a particular podcast, open the Podcasts app, touch and hold the show’s artwork on the Library screen, tap Settings, then turn on Automatic Downloads.”

Method 2: Sync Apple Podcasts via iTunes

Sync Apple Podcast with Mac

iTunes can be a pain in the neck, but it’s one of the ways you can sync your podcasts. It particularly has problems on the iPad, but if this option ends up being the most convenient for you, this is what you need to know about it.

  • According to Apple’s website, you can sync music and data through iTunes (which includes podcasts).
  • Open up iTunes first, then connect your device to your Mac. Make sure you have a secure connection between your iPad and Mac before you begin.
  • You’ll see a device icon in the top-left corner of iTunes. Click on it and you’ll open up your device menu.
  • In your specific device settings, you’ll see the different types of content you can sync to your iPad. You have to sync specific types of content with checkboxes. If you don’t want your music on your iPad (as many people don’t), you can choose not to select it and only sync podcasts.
  • Select the checkbox that says “Podcasts” and then click the “Apply” button. This moves around depending on the version of iTunes you have right now. If it doesn’t begin to sync on its own, use the “Sync” button to initiate the transfer.

With the ever-changing landscape that is iTunes, apply this menu to the current setup. Some option menus may be renamed in the future with certain updates; apply your best practices based on this menu and you should end up in the right place.

Method 3: Sync Apple Podcasts via Quick Start

New device quickstart menu

Quick start helps you set up a new device with ease, or at least that’s the goal. Sometimes you can run into some issues. Let’s talk about and help you get started with Quick Start.

  • Quick Start only works with a new device. When you launch your new device, place it near your current (soon to be old) device.
  • Your new device will give you an option to change your Apple ID to your new device. Select it, tap “Continue” on your new device. You have to make sure that Bluetooth is enabled for this to work.
  • The setup can take some time. You’ll see a “Finish on New Device” option that appears. You want to manually authenticate with the next step.
  • You’ll have to enter your new device password and possibly set up Face ID. Now you’ll be prompted to transfer your data and continue. There’s a few options to allow specific types of data to be transferred over, including media and podcasts.

Quick Start is great, but if you’re using a new iPad, you have to restore your iCloud backup to your new device and that’s a lengthy process. Just be prepared for it. If you don’t care to back up your new device, you can use Quick Start and get situated rather quickly so you can start listening to podcasts as soon as possible.

Method 4: Sync Apple Podcasts with a Professional Tool

Ways to sync Apple Podcasts

If all else fails, as it often does with Apple products and syncing your media with it, you can use an external professional tool. Third-party software can do an amazing job of replacing a lot of Apple’s functions and getting your podcasts synced up with little to no worry. This is what you need to do.

  • You can sync this with a PC or third-party software by simply plugging in your device to your computer. From there, make sure you have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enabled.
  • Launch your software and follow the prompt. While we don’t personally recommend one software over another, just be sure you check its reputation online.
  • Understand that syncing media with an iPad that isn’t through iTunes can have an impact on your device and ability to sync again later. Apple is very proprietary about their devices, so you might run into some flak there.
  • While you can sync media from your PC to your iPad or device, Apple likes to make things difficult. Use third-party software (see some of the best podcast recording software options here) if you really hate iTunes that much, but if these options don’t work, iTunes even on a Windows PC should do the trick using the guide we listed above.

Sync it Up

It’s actually not as difficult to sync your iPad and Mac as you probably thought when you found this article. All it takes is a bit of patience and know-how, and before long you won’t have to worry about it 

Rose Evans

Helping podcasters grow their podcast has been my passion for the past 6 years, being part of the Wired Clip team means I can do this on a much larger scale.

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