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Why the latest iOS app is somewhat useless


I wonder if the app not working offline means that it is streaming content that I have already downloaded, and therefore counting against my telephone company’s data allowance each time I use the app, despite having downloaded it originally over WiFi.


Hi Leurne,

Sorry that you’re not completely happy with the app at the moment. Sadly it is still far from an ideal app. We decided to outsource it to a company but development is slow and not as high quality as we would like. We are currently looking for in-house iOS developers to take over full-time development and make it more stable. The Android app on the other hand has had a passionate in-house developer working on it over the last few months, and was a big fan of ChinesePod already, and the quality shows in the app. Sadly the same can’t be said for iOS.

If the app is not to your expectations, the best way to listen currently is using the RSS feed with a podcast player (for offline use, or using our responsive mobile website. If you would like to discuss some sort of refund or extension to your account, feel free to email me at



Hi gwilym,
I do not want any refund because I f*cking enjoy to listen your podcast and honestly, I already try to look somewhere else and nothing was nice as chinesepod. At least some extension could be nice :smiley:
But what I really would like is to have this information earlier: lot of people are complaining about the app, but I’m thinking it could be due to a lack of information. For example on the blog/on the forum or whatever. It could be really nice to know what is the objectif for the app, the next features , how the website will progress etc…


+1 Bump this thread. It looks nicer but the UI is unintuitive – swipe left and right to select between levels? I do a lot of audio review.

The button on the lower right has a “list” icon, but inside here is the way to hit Play on the audio?
How come I can’t queue up lessons?
Why don’t I have a unified feed?
What’s up with the left side menu filtering?

How much feedback did the dev team actually get from real users about how useable is the App?

I have found the YepChinese app to be so much more functional. And free. I have spent thousand USD on Chinese pod for the past few years and I don’t bother to log in anymore for the past few months because it’s just not adding value. I am seriously questioning renewing.


Can you shed some light on why you think in-house iOS developers will do a better job? Just to help us understand.


EASY! I can answer!
Because there is NO ios developers!
I understood that currently, there is only one android dev’, but it seems quiet difficult for an android dev to make the same quality on ios (because for the android users, it seems ok).
So currently = nobody for ios.
But my point is : we already heard they were looking for a new dev (it was in january or february, I can’t remember exactly). So I’m bit worry they still not find him


wtf. Yepchinese is completely free, that’s strange… I’m trying it but until now, I had few bug on the website and the app


I’m a bit surprised that it’s hard to find an iOS dev considering how large the platform is. Given that there is no dedicated iOS developer it’s no wonder that the changes can’t be implement quickly. I’m on android and have to say that @Armel is doing an amazing job on the Android app. I have been helping test the new app from the beginning and whenever there is a bug or requested feature it’s usually implemented in the next update.

I’m sorry to hear that iOS users are having so much trouble through :frowning:


It’s actually @hunter_robbert that develops the Android app :slight_smile:


Ah, that’s right, my mistake. Thanks @GwilymJames for the correction, I got their names confused :frowning: But yes, @hunter_robbert has been doing a great job on the android app.


@Matt_T @GwilymJames

Thanks Matt!




I have been using chinesepod on and off for years, this app is the worst so far. I just signed up for premium so I can do the vocab things on the app but it only works when connected to the Internet. I live in China so connecting to stable internet is a rare thing.

I tried downloading some of the lessons so I could listen to the lessons on the go but the button to then access downloaded lessons doesn’t work at all. Nor to any of the buttons on the menu screen. I have already done the re download the app to my phone, after deleting the two older versions I had from before.

why why why

Can the app god of Chinese pod please hear my prayers and make an app that allows me to listen to the lessons when I am not online?

I’m now back to what I was doing 4 or 5 years ago, downloading the audio to may laptop to then transfer to my iphone/ipod. Progress! Oh, I am paying more this time…

Chinesepod demigods I’m sure you are working on a new version of the app with developers. Can you give us a timeline on how long this will take???


Hi, Thanks for the tip. Does ICatcher work off line?


Just bought Icatcher from app store. I can only find newbie podcasts. How do I find the other podcasts?


Hi Misty104, you might find these support articles helpful. I recommend you check your RSS feed settings first.


Hi Misty, If you want stable offline listening, I recommend using the RSS feed and using a podcast app like Icatcher (which I see you’ve downloaded) or Overcast: I apologise on behalf of ChinesePod for the state of the current iOS app.


Gwilym, could you please explain about the Course Feed. How is it different from the lesson feed and how do you use it?


I used to be a subscriber, a couple of years ago. At that time Chinesepod was, as the name implies, a podcast service, Along with visual lesson materials. You could download lessons and listen back to them whenever you had a minute. I thought that was central to the whole concept of ChinesePod. Study when you want, where you want. Travel, which so often has no wifi, is also the perfect kind of downtime to switch on a Chinesepod lesson.
I have an iPad with the latest CP app installed. You click the download lesson link. It downloads. But then, hey presto, when you want to listen to it, the lesson is unavailable. Great!
I am mystified by this. Am I missing something really obvious ( I realise I could be) or is Chinese Pod failing to deliver on its own main selling concept?


I don’t understand how this thread just continues on and on.

It’s already been said multiple times that the iOS app is not the best choice. Use any podcast player and insert your RSS feed. Simple as that, it’s been said multiple times if you read the thread. Does anybody actually read the thread before they post? It’s not that difficult to use the podcast player and functions better than the app itself.

Yes it’s unfortunate the app isn’t working as should be, but understand they obviously don’t have the resources to meet the demand. If you can code swift or objective c, there’s an opportunity here. If not lets just stop complaining how bad the app is, we already know!

Please people read the thread.


Yeah, point taken!
But it’s good to let off steam a bit and keep communicating the urgency to the Chinese Pod team. We pay our subscriptions based on reasonable expectations of being able to listen to lessons on the move, away from wifi. It shouldn’t be too hard to implement this within iOS (hardly a minority platform) with the budget. It’s not like this is a free service. I sent a support request to CP and it took 10 days to get an answer. It just feels like this side of the business is underfunded and neglected and letting down the amazing quality of the teaching materials.