Episode sorting, Advanced playback settings, Episode display upgrade (Player FM for Android)

I mentioned in the tablet upgrade post we’re presently in a “happiness tweaks” phase, and we’ve added several of these in the past couple of weeks.

These new features are now available at Google Play.

Sort episodes

Some people wanted to see episodes from the top first. This lets you listen to episodes on your phone just before the auto-download fairy whisks them away in favour of fresh ones. And some shows do actually make more sense in chronological order, e.g. fiction series.

With the new sort feature, you can not only reverse order, but sort by duration in either direction as well. A quick way to find the show matching your workout or commute.

Advanced playback settings

As with other media apps, there’s now an option to pause when you remove headphones. We took this a step further, and the app will also resume when you put the headphones back. It’s actually a neat way to quickly pause and resume, e.g. when you get to the front of the line in a store. Resuming will only work if you have an active Player FM notification, if Player FM was the last app to control playback, and of course you must have the option turned on.

The other setting applies to lock-screen and Bluetooth. A new option lets you skip 30 seconds within the current track using next/previous controls, instead of switching episodes. If you’re not listening to Player FM on Bluetooth, I highly recommend it. Being wireless is much more convenient when you’re mobile. And no more heroic un-tangling efforts!

Episode display

You’ll notice episode playlists have had a bit of a facelift. The progress bar is now thicker for episodes you’ve begun playing. We’ve kept it minimal for episodes you haven’t, because we like comparing episodes by length, but we don’t want the distraction of a thick bar for all episodes. Episodes you’ve finished playing are now faded. Remember, you can also hide these altogether from the overflow menu; and you can manually mark any episode as played anytime. As always, the current episode is shown in red.

Reminder: Lock-screen widget

I mentioned the new lock screen setting above, which is a good excuse to remind you Player FM has a separate lock-screen widget. That means if you’re running Android 4.2.1 or later, you can get a richer lock-screen interface. The widget ships with the Player FM app and here’s a tutorial explaining how to add lock-screen widgets like this.

And to go on a complete tangent, we’ve recently improved the regular widget’s design too.

Other news: Website login upgrade

In other news, the website has been upgraded for a smoother login and signup experience, based on a single popup dialogue instead of being bounced to and from a separate login screen.