Feed Sponge v1.1

June 27, 2010, 9:40 p.m.

Version 1.1 of my Feed Sponge application is published to the Android Marketplace at $.99.

This is my solution for the handful of lackluster or relatively expensive podcatching apps in the Marketplace. There was always something critical missing from all of the ones I have tried either in playback, position retention, automated download, video support, or clumsy UI. That is a personal opinion, and I'll let you make your own judgments on how I stack up.

Screenshot 1

Main feed list (top) and example episode

Key Features:

  • Update then download automatically starting at an arbitrary time and repeating in 1,2,4,6,8,12, or 24 hour intervals.

  • Optionally restrict downloading to Wifi. Useful when "unlimited" is more of a brand-name than a technical specification.

  • Optionally restrict downloading to USB power only.

  • If battery downloads are allowed, require a user specified minimum charge level.

  • Track playback position and resume where the user left off.

  • Continous playback for new audio podcasts. Play all downloaded but unheard podcasts in order inside the feed then by publish date outside the feed. (Great for driving, especially motorcycle riding.)

  • Pause and resume playback when the headphones are removed or re-inserted. Pull the headphones when you get to work, re-insert on the way home.

  • Disable automatic media download on a per-subscription basis.

  • Configure per-subscription retention periods based on total days downloaded and number of 100% completed podcasts to keep.

  • Circumvent automatic deletion and "Delete All" by choosing to Keep a podcast indefinitely.

What is left:

  • Refactor the "Next" operation. Currently the next operation requires that the app had focus before the lock/power button is pressed to put the phone in standby. Otherwise it will stop at the end of the media file and complete when the app regains focus. It works fine if the player has focus when the phone is locked and you aren't playing video, of course.

  • Find a decent podcast directory to streamline the subscription process. I have scoured the internet and all of the directories either offered no OPML/Web API, had dated or invalid feed data, tried to wrap the feeds themselves, or started throwing HTTP 50x/40x errors at me.


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tags( #feedsponge #android )


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