Episodes screen proposal

Please wait before you implement something. We already changed the whole UI last October and I think the app should stay as consistent as possible.

Hmm. To me, this feels like it will make the app harder to use because users have to reach all the way to the top of the screen to display things like their favorite episodes.

In order to guide users more easily about the “workflow” with queue and “new” state, I think having a dedicated “Inbox” side menu item would be helpful. Maybe the “new” screen and the “Recently played” screen could switch positions. Then we no longer have a problem with swiping on the inbox/“new” screen.

Do people really switch that often? I would think just one of the screens is used most often, then the Favourites might only be visited occasionally.

Just to be sure I get it: so you’d be ok with having the Inbox as a dedicated fragment/screen with its own menu entry?

What do you mean? Not sure what the ‘Recently played’ screen is - do you refer to Playback History? Switch where - in the side menu?

I don’t know. Sometimes, collecting some metrics would really help with development…

Only if we remove another sidebar entry instead. I don’t want the list to get longer and longer

I meant: Make the playback history a tab on the “episodes” screen and instead move the “new”/Inbox screen directly to the menu.

1 Like

Right, I see. I like that idea, think it could work! It would be interesting indeed to have metrics. But I reckon that if this gets implemented in Beta, we would already hear back if it was really not appreciated :slight_smile: I have good hopes, though, that the new home for the playback history would be fine for most users.

So then the New tab already is kind of the Inbox, no?

I made a proof of concept GitHub - ueen/AntennaPod at power-home

its not polished or anything, maybe you like to try it, an especially great feature is, that paused episodes are on top, so you dont forget to finish them, would be interesting to get some feedback. :innocent:

This is certainly not for everyone (workflow), but i think this could be a good default, because its simple and all in one place :slight_smile:

No, that’s the thing. It’s similar, but the Inbox proposal is far more extensive. The idea was first to merge them, but now ByteHamster suggested they could live seperately. So if they live seperately, we need to more clearly define their difference.

As there’s no CI tests in that repo I can’t download a debug build, so I can’t test. But please note that unless there’s agreement by the community, it’s not likely a PR will be accepted. So I would strongly advice you to hold off with actual development until we’re clear on which screens we’ll have, and what they’ll look like exactly. Otherwise you might well be wasting your time :wink:

It’s important to note that the Inbox screen is different from the Home screen. As I don’t know what you’re working on, I can’t really comment on the quote above.

The sidebar is pretty messy anyway, maybe some could be just hidden by default, the new/queue workflow seems useful for some, but i think for the majority this is way to complicated, so i wouldnt nudge torwards that workflow…

Maybe there could be a welcome screen and the user can select a workflow, based on which different sets of sidebartabs are hidden, this needs to be designed well, but it could be helpful. I consider myself somewhat of techsavy, but it was impossible for me to figure out how New/Queue work, so i can only imagine how confused the regular user must be…

I dont know, i just feel like, there should be a good, simple default (like this new episode screen :stuck_out_tongue: ) and then there must be a kind of tutorial or smth, how one can discover other workflows like new/queue (like “Want to try another way of using AP” and a small visual explanation), maybe @keunes has some ideas about userflow and presenting infomation like this :slight_smile:

yea maybe seperarting in inbox and a modified episodes fragment, does make sense then…

so the way i see it there are three different workflows:

  • Homescreen
  • EpisodesFragment first
  • New/Queue

I think these should be seperated more clearly, because mixing them doesnt make much sense

Yea, but seeing/using is understanding :wink: Can i make a PR to build the CI?

They’re different screens, not different user stories.

Two different user stories:

1 I am subscribed to a lot of podcasts. Most of the time I work from the Home screen. From there I (re)initiate playback. Once in a while from the Home screen I open the Inbox screen to review new episodes. I select which ones I (might) want to listen, and which ones should be ignored. I make use of the queue and automatic download mechanisms, which uses the input I give in the Inbox screen. But sometimes from the Home screen I open the Queue screen or the ‘On device’ tab of the Episodes screen to find an episode from a specific podcast (from the list of episodes I have downloaded on my phone).

2 I’m not a regular podcast listener, and only am subscribed to three podcasts. I always work from the Home screen, because it gives quick access to my three podcasts and shows the newest episodes. I sometimes use the Inbox screen to find an episode I want to listen to. But most of the time from the Home screen I just open one of the Podcast screens to look for an episode that interests me. I don’t use the queue at all, because I only listen occasionally.

The first story is me, the second story is my boyfriend (and many others just starting with podcasts). As you can see, in both stories the Home screen is kind of the starting screen. But each user story involves multiple screens (which is why your list of screens isn’t a list of workflows). If the home screen doesn’t serve your user story, we should improve it :wink: Maybe you can write your user story in the same style as I have done? It would be very helpful!

I agree that we should improve the app for new starters, making AntennaPod work better for the two distinct user stories. Indeed a welcome screen that helps you set up the app could help. But it’s not an easy or quick decision - it’s been brought up briefly before (can’t find back the thread or issue now) and there’s quite a few things to consider.

So let’s first create & improve the screens we’re discussing here, and then after start a discussion about an interactive onboarding procedure :slight_smile:

Sure, but an interactive mock-up that you can click through does the same. And is a whole lot more efficient method to reach the same goal (because it’s much easier to make adjustments in a visual than rewrite whole pieces of code). But how you spend your time and whether you’re fine with trashing work because the concept is not accepted, that’s up to you of course :wink:

Thanks, I’ll have a look after my work day!

Workflow=userstory, however gotlike to call it, there are different ones.

I’m only subscribed to podcast I want to listen to, so I mainly use the EpisodesScreen to check if there are new ones and then listen to them, rarely I go to a podcast feed via the sidebar to listen to older episodes. That’s basically, easy and straightforward :slight_smile: that’s why I was confused by the sidebar at first, because there are so many items, to me the only ones necessary are discovery, to add new podcasts, and then the combined feed of all subscriptions.

Also I think this is somewhat a regular user expects, similar to the subscription feed in YouTube.

I get the new/queue workflow, but its certainly not for everyone, and the way it is now, it’s almost impossible to discover.

So this proposal only makes when an inbox is introduced seperatly, because it breaks the new/queue workflow.

I’m not sure how the homescreen fits in, let’s take your first userstory, to restart playback, you can just use the bottomsheetplayer, with the inbox you fill the queue, done, no need for a homescreen.

I don’t where your stand, but do you want to provide choice to use AP as one wants or make a unified UX that makes sense to everyone? Because right know it feels it’s somewhat in between. I guess I only feel strongly about not making inbox/queue the default, as I feel it is kind of a niche workflow/userstory and hard to discover, but currently it’s equally hard to discover how the Episodes screen works with all the tabs (and I found that Episodes is the subscriptions feed only by trial and error)…

Curious what you think :slight_smile:

Sure. My point was that in any case screens (what you listed) is different from those stories.

Thanks for writing up your story. The first bit isn’t relevant - all users are only subscribed to the podcasts they want to listen to. It would be weird to subscribe to one that you don’t want to listen to :stuck_out_tongue: To how many podcasts are you subscribed?

Let me rewrite and expand a bit:
3 I am subscribed to 10 or so podcasts. I always work from the Inbox screen: from there I check if there are new Episodes and then listen to them (I tap on an episode and start playback from the Episode screen). The occasional episode I’m not interested in, I swipe away to Ignore. I’m not interested in older episodes, so I rarely I go to a Podcast screen via the sidebar. If I was listing to a podcast, I can relaunch playback through the miniplayer. If I pause episode A and start playback episode B this means I’m done listening to episode A (I won’t finish it) - so I don’t care about a list of paused/previously started episodes. The Home screen I don’t use either, because I can start playback via the Episodes screen, and don’t find the other elements on the Home screen helpful.

Do you feel this could represent you?

It’s tricky to define a ‘regular user’ and to say what they might or might not expect. I feel like a regular user - I don’t feel special :stuck_out_tongue: We have a lot of users that get AntennaPod through F-Droid, and they would probably have a different user profile than our Google users. So let’s not speculate to much.

The Inbox screen as I proposed it could work for you, but (as I wrote in user story 1) it also helps me. So it doesn’t ‘break’ a workflow that heavily relies on the queue.

In user story 1 I still benefit from the home screen, as it gives me access to the different screens I use (as noted, I sometimes want to see what I have on my device and choose a particular episode). In a way it replaces the sidebar menu.

I agree it’s ‘in between’ use-cases/workflows. And as there are different ones, and we cannot dictate the default (because we don’t know our users), a Welcome screen/interactive onboarding would help a lot.

Maybe i needed to be more clear, i’m only subscribed to podcasts i want to listen to every episode :wink:
On YT for example i dont see all videos and pick and choose the ones i want to see (like you with your inbox workflow) - subscribed to a good dozen.

Almost, i do sometimes switch between episodes and continue one laters, thats why, in my new episodesscreen, the paused ones are always displayed on top, see:

But sometimes i dont want to finsh an episode, then i would swipe it away :slight_smile:

i get that, but there is a regular user, and that is one that does not set any settings and in my opinion just wants a simple feed of all subscriptions, at least i think that is the expectation, you know, its the same on youtubes subscription feed or for that matter your e-mail app, theres just one feed where new episodes come in.

Depends there could be a default and you can change it or you force a choice in the beginning in the onboarding, but as i understood @ByteHamster and makes sense for me here too, the app should just work without a tutorial, so i think there should be a good default (this episodes screen :smiley: ) and then there could be a popup (like the one “You stream a lot, want to stream by default”) where the user can customize as he goes.

I’m not sure, do you think inbox and my episodes screen could be combined?
Customizable swipe actions would be easy, maybe on the first swipe the tutorial/settings could come up like “what do you want to happen”?
Would you keep the paused episodes ontop or would that break the inbox? (could be made optional if inbox workflow was selected before)
also does the inbox need to be empty at some point or dont you mind if there are a few old episodes lingering in there? (saw the clear inbox from your proposal)

This might just work, then we could have both :slight_smile:
Also i think the tutorial/settings on first swipe would provide a great opportunity to indroduce the queue to new users, really start to like this idea, maybe we could get some more feedback from different users :slight_smile:

Sounds like quite a change, but i think this could be a huge improvement!

To add to workflow from users : in my case I have about 30 subscriptions. I use new episodes to see which podcast has released new episode. For episodes I want to listen I initiate a download to add them to my queue. For others one I either keep them as new for later (but it’s not often I do that, only if my queue has really a lot of episodes) or dismiss them. If later on I catch up for some podcasts I check their episodes and download the next one I didn’t listen to.

Edit : so in my workflow, queue is really important since I manage it and often reorder it.

1 Like

Sorry, that’s not what I meant. I suggested to rename the “new” page to “Inbox” and move it to the sidebar instead of the tab on the episodes screen. When it then is its own screen, we can think about swipe actions.


We already discussed something like this elsewhere. I don’t think it’s a good idea because when starting the app for the first time, users don’t know their preferred workflow yet. Anyway, this is another topic.

@Matth78 discovered it :wink: That’s also the exact same workflow I use

The home screen can help to guide users in how to use the app. If we order the elements similar to the queue workflow (which is how AntennaPod was originally designed to be used, I think), the users already get an idea on what to do when. They are still free to use other workflows, though.

Sounds like the queue with auto-download would be exactly your use-case. All newly released episodes are added to the bottom of the queue. When you don’t like one, you can swipe it away. You can even drag+drop them if you want to listen in another order. I don’t really understand what the advantage of your updated episodes screen would be over this. The queue is even more flexible.

1 Like

Ahhhh, ok :slight_smile: Now I get it, haha. Yes, makes sense. So there won’t be a ‘New’ tab in the Episodes screen. Just All, Favorites, On device. In this case, the Downloads screen would be dismantled: On device (previous Completed tab) would be under Episodes, Log would live under the Settings screen (possibly accessible also via a button in the On device tab, and of course via the notifications). Playback history I would tuck under the Queue and/or full Player screen.
Then we’d have:

  • Home
  • Inbox
  • Queue
  • Episodes
  • Subscriptions
  • Add Podcast (which can be replaced with updated Discover screen)
  • [All podcasts]
  • Settings

What d’you think @Bytehamster?

Main advantage is not to use the sidebar (one hand), also thats not really my workflow. I often dont even get to complete an episode in one go, so i always choose the episode i want to listen to based on the current mood, therefore i have really no use for the queue. But i get why one would want the queue if you are commuting a lot or something, i just think it isn’t the default expectation (see yt) and should be better explained :slight_smile:

But its not just about my personal preference, its also about versatility for different use-cases, i think the one list and filter aproach is better because you dont need to switch screens so often.

And in the current version, its fully compatible with the inbox use case!
Maybe this video helps explain it a little bit better

The firstswipe would be a great opertunity to indroduce the inbox/queue pattern with a small infographic and give the user the choice to change the swipe actions to whatever they prefer.