Last year I switched to Airr as my main podcast app when they launched the beta, and have used it exclusively just about every day since.
Airr’s killer feature is the “AirrQuote”, which lets you clip snippets of podcast audio to share. There’s no other podcast app like it with as many integrations, like highlighting and syncing to your Readwise knowledge management workflow. It also has transcripts for tons of shows, which is a feature I didn’t know I wanted til I tried using Spotify or Overcast again and couldn’t scan through the shows in text form.
Hot off the presses last week, the Airr team shipped a slick new feature called “AirrSpaces”, which adds an audio chat room sort of functionality, an interesting innovation in a podcast player. An AirrSpace is like a combination of a podcast, Discord group chat, and Clubhouse room — hosts record clips and post into the room, which can be played in top to bottom sequence, like a normal podcast conversation. Others in the room can submit clips, too, like questions or comments for the host to review and post to the room or reply to. The Airr team hosted an introductory space you can take a look at as an example.
All of that is a cool mixture of some existing ideas, but they’ve not been done before in a podcast app. Podcast creation has historically been surprisingly lacking in client apps. What Clubhouse, Twitter Spaces, and AirrSpaces are bringing to the party is participatory audio: lowering the barrier for creating and enabling direct audience involvement. One of my favorite features is the asynchronous nature of an AirrSpace. One can be active for days with new conversation to return to, just like entering a group chat and catching up.
The “aftershow” genre has been a pattern catching on in Clubhouse; perhaps AirrSpaces will create a form of audio comment threads per episode that can spin up a new AirrSpace for post-show discussion on each one.