Pocket Casts backtracks, giving paid customers lifetime access to its app

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What you need to know

  • Pocket Casts will now provide lifetime access on the web and desktop to customers that paid for access to those apps.
  • This comes after Pocket Casts announced a switch to a new subscription model this week.
  • The change is in response to backlash from users around the web.

Pocket Casts changed its plans for users that previously purchased access to the web or desktop versions of its app. Now, users that paid for the apps will receive lifetime access them. In a blog post titled “We Heard You”, Pocket Casts CEO, Owen Grover, announced that the company has updated its plans.

When Pocket Casts announced that its mobile app would be free, the company also announced that desktop and web users would need a subscription. The company offered three years of Pocket Casts Plus for users who had previously purchased the app, but this did not prevent outrage from fans around the web.

Users on Reddit pointed out that Pocket Casts at one point claimed that users would only have to pay once. Another Reddit post highlighted the fact that Pocket Casts at one point claimed that the company didn’t “do freemium.”

We don’t do freemium. No VC funding. No crazy. We love podcasts and we’ve built the web player that we want to use. We’ve priced it at a point where we’ll stick around to keep it up to date. You can expect support, features and many more awesome things in the future.

The latest blog post from Grover states that Pocket Casts “missed the mark.”

We made some pretty big changes this week, and we’ve heard your feedback loud and clear. Although we intended to demonstrate our appreciation to our most loyal users, we know many of you feel we missed the mark. With that in mind, today we’ve decided to provide any user who previously purchased our Web version with lifetime access to Pocket Casts Plus. This includes the Mac and Windows apps as well. No renewal, no monthly charge, no questions asked. This means Desktop App purchasers will also gain access to all of the Pocket Casts Plus features on their mobile devices.

Hopefully, this gesture eliminates confusion and demonstrates our commitment to you, the loyal listeners who’ve helped build Pocket Casts into the platform it is today. We simply wouldn’t be here without you.

Though the post stops just short of an apology, it does show a change of actions that ensures customers who paid for the app will have access to it in the future. Additionally, those who purchased the app in the pass gain lifetime access to Pocket Casts Plus on all platforms, including the ability to upload up to 10 GB of personal content to the cloud.

Streaming podcasts

Pocket Casts

Pocket Casts is a popular podcast app that can sync llistening progress across devices. It is free on mobile, but will require a subscription for some features or to use the desktop or web apps for new customers.

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