03
Aug
listentiny

Listen, the relatively popular, if neglected, podcast app from Google has been surreptitiously pulled from the Play Store recently. It's unclear just how long ago Google pulled it (though it appears to be within the last week or so), and users are looking everywhere for it. There is also no indication on what Google has planned for it from here on out. We've reached out to Google for comment but have not heard back as of publication. For users who have previously installed the app, you can still find the Play Store listing here. Everyone else, however, will see the familiar 404 landing page:

Update: Google just issued a statement on the official Google Blog:

We launched Google Listen through Google Labs in August 2009, to give people a way to discover and listen to podcasts. However, with Google Play, people now have access to a wider variety of podcast apps, so we’ve discontinued Listen. People who have already installed the app can still use it, but after November 1, podcast search won’t function. You can access your podcast subscriptions in Google Reader in the “Listen Subscriptions” folder and download them from the Import/Export tab.

So there you have it - Listen is dead, and it isn't coming back. Not even as Zombie Listen.

2012-08-03_13h55_32

If you've previously downloaded the app, you should still be able to install it to any of your devices via the Play Store listing page. It does not seem to appear on the devices themselves, even when the Play Store page lists that they are compatible. However, if you really want to hang on to it, make a backup of the apk ASAP. There's no telling how long this page will last.

Hopefully we'll see Google integrate Listen more closely with the Google Play. Built-in podcast functionality as part of Play Music, as well as perhaps listing pages for podcasts in the Play Store would be really, really nice (and if it happens, you can bet we'll be there). In the meantime, though, it's the waiting game for us until we hear from Google. Considering that the last time that Listen was updated was back in January of this year, though, it might be a while before Google decides to address it.

Source: Play Store

Thanks, Cody!

Eric Ravenscraft
Eric is a snarky technophile with a taste for the unusual. When he's not obsessing about Android, you can usually find him obsessing about movies, psychology, or the perfect energy drink. Eric weaves his own special blend of snark, satire, and comedy into all his articles.

  • WestIndiesKING

    this is something i hope they integrate into Google music. To where you can directly subscribe from reader or music to podcast.

    • Iulian Arcus

      Except for the fact that Music is only in the US whereas this was global.

  • http://twitter.com/disengageauto Andwele

    My thoughts exactly it still need a better UI though.

  • Matt Janey

    Why not combine with Google Music, I've found myself using Stitcher radio to listen to things I used to access with Listen...

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=126634 Patrick Peterson

    I love this product and use Listen almost every day. It's sad that they've pulled it, but I hope they integrate it into the Play Music app. On the G+ page, somebody mentioned that it was a 20% project for two googlers who are no longer there. That's too bad because this app is great and I really got a lot of use out of it...

  • Aaron Berlin

    I've been a huge fan of Pocket Casts since I finally abandoned Listen sometime last year and I haven't looked back. I feel bad for indie podcatcher developers if Google is going to get back into this space in a big way, though.

  • http://turbofool.com Jarrett Lennon Kaufman

    I moved on, happily, from Listen a very long time ago. Buggy, unreliable app. Was always disappointing to see how little Google cared about it, because its simplicity was lovely.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001235596936 Jason Wilkinson

    I clicked the link at 2:30pm and landed on the download page, is it back up?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      "For users who have previously installed the app, you can still find the Play Store listing here. Everyone else, however, will see the familiar 404 landing page"

      Go Incognito and see what happens.

      • Dbareis

        As I get 404 and I've previously downloaded it, I think the above needs to be changed to "For users that have the app installed..."

        • Myroslaw Bytz

          I've previously installed, but don't have it anymore, and I'm still seeing it in Google Play.

          • Dbareis

            Your right, got a 404 earlier but can see it now...

  • S. LeBeau Kpadenou

    I hate to be a grouch, but good riddance. Listen was one of the worst user experiences I've seen from Google in a long time. buggy/crashy, lacking many standard features. I kind of feel like it existed because Android needed a podcatcher, and Google hoped some developers would get pissed off enough at play to create their own. I really hope this is true, actually.

    • Aaron Berlin

      It was very much vintage Android and never really made the leap to modern Android.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Well, I think in its current state and with no updates yeah, but what's sad is Google could have worked on making it better and improving like it does other apps. That's why I can't agree with a comment like "good riddance" - it's really not if it were maintained right.

  • ChadH42

    Google has pulled the URL posted in the article so its gives a 404 error as well.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Did you read the article? "
      For users who have previously installed the app, you can still find the Play Store listing here. Everyone else, however, will see the familiar 404 landing page"

      • http://btwnworlds.tumblr.com/ Lou G

        That explains why the play store logo comes up but not much else for me.

  • http://twitter.com/ssantinelli Steven Santinelli

    I love listen, I love how it downloads all my podcasts, so I can pull everything wirelessly and then listen while I'm driving.... That's sad, it was a nice, simple program, and I could use google reader to access, add, and adjust things on my PC... :(

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      I used both, and I much prefer BeyondPod with its Google Reader integration. It's just superior in every way, though not free.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jason.w.fitzgerald Jason Fitzgerald

    Listen was awful. It didn't work well, couldn't get old episodes, just not good. I use PodKicker now and am very pleased. Although, I am interested to see what Big-G will do for an alternative.

  • Chris Guanche

    I tried Listen a long time ago and didn't care much for its features or UI. I found Podkicker shortly after and never turned back.

  • Jake

    Maybe now I'll stop getting notifications to update Listen on my Logitech Revue. I don't know why I that notice pops up, when Listen isn't installed or supported on the device. I tried Listen on my phone a year ago and it was terrible. It nearly drove me away from Android, because I thought if Google couldn't produce a decent Android app, then there was little hope for the OS.

  • http://twitter.com/Xeratun Xeratun

    I was never able to get it to work very well. I couldn't figure out how to manually add podcasts. So I use Stitcher for you guys and the direct download link just automatically streams the other Podcast I listen to through Play Music.

  • K

    Google Pinyin is pulled as well

  • http://btwnworlds.tumblr.com/ Lou G

    I used Google listen when I first got my nexus 7. It didn't do video, so it wasn't my favorite. I got pocket casts (and recommend them) so I'm golden. I just wonder IF Google does add podcasting..how soon before Apple sues?

  • http://twitter.com/_zRanks zRanks

    If you are searching a new podcast app,
    here is an Android Podcast apps ranking:
    http://Android.zRanks.com/ranking/podcast-apps
    You can also rank you favorite ones.

  • Rain Clark

    You're the reason for the tear drops on my smart phone.

  • mckooter

    My phone is pretty much just for podcasts and audiobooks.. I have always loved BeyondPod, I tried others recently but didn't enjoy as much, probably just the familiarity factor coming in, good alternative if anyone was still on listen

  • Tyler Chappell

    So am I not the only weird person here that installs every Google developed app on his devices just because it's a Google app (save for a few that are of no interest to me, like the Google Authenticator)? I installed this on my Nexus 7 the day I got it, I've had it on my Thunderbolt for over a year. I have never once used it other than to open it up to take a quick peek, please tell me I am not the only one!? :D Now that it's "gone" I may try to actually use it to finally see what it's like haha

  • http://kennydude.me/ Joe Simpson

    I'm sure I heard they were going to open source it

  • Dan

    If you're looking for a Google Listen replacement, check out Podax. It was inspired by Listen but has moved well past that. It's free in the Play Store and can import your subscriptions from Reader so it should be easy to get started.

  • Robert Ray

    Simply having Listen installed can cause other audio apps to randomly pause, like Amazon Cloud Player. Taking bugs to a new level.

  • kc_exactly

    i literally have used this app for 3 years. what a bummer!

  • pjulien

    I made listen up if you're interested:

    http://codepimpsdotorg.blogspot.ca/2012/08/listen-up.html

  • Pete

    I've been using Listen Up - https://play.google.com/store/apps/developer?id=codepimps - since Listen died :( and it's the best replacement I've found so far.

  • http://www.facebook.com/cecil.harwell.9 Cecil Edward Harwell

    Google listen is still (or back) in the play store

  • kevINSIGHT

    Its use of Google Reader to get podcasts via RSS was such a better model than Music and iTunes. Too bad they don't see it that way. Then again, I like the Lapdocks that they discontinued as well. Why are they just trying to become another Apple? Can't they see the way Microsoft is dying and know better?

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