The Apple Podcasts app on iOS 12 finally features proper implementation of chapter markers that were in there before but left a lot to be desired

Chapter markers in podcast shows are not really new—Apple’s own Podcasts app has supported them for quite some time now—but iOS 12 makes this handy feature easier to use.

If your favorite show came with embedded chapters, you can view and use them inside the Podcasts app to instantly jump to a predefined content point or skip whole sections of the show without needing to skim through the entire episode blindly, like an animal.

Apple giveth, Apple taketh away

The podcast file format has supported chapter markers for years.

Many third-party apps have supported chapters markers from their inception, but Apple’s Podcasts app wouldn’t implement support for them until iOS 10’s September 2016 release.

This is a comeback of a previously removed feature: older iOS versions used to display chapter markers, but functionality clearly wasn’t there because you couldn’t jump to one.

The Podcasts app even used to employe a small purple indicator to show you which chapter you were currently in. Apple in its infinite wisdom removed that as well! Thankfully, iOS 12 brings back the indicator for the currently playing chapter.

How to use chapters in the Podcasts app

To jump to a chapter marker in Apple Podcasts, do the following:

1) Open the Podcasts app on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch with iOS 12 or later.

2) Begin playing an episode you like.

3) On the Now Playing screen (tap the mini player at the bottom to open the Now Playing screen), swipe up to reveal hidden options at the bottom.

4) Tap the option Show next to Chapters, right below Episode Notes.

TIP: If you don’t see this option, the show does not include any chapter markers.

A screenshot showing accessing the embedded chapter markers by swiping up on the Now Playing screen in the Podcasts app on iOS 12

5) Tap a chapter from the list to instantly jump to that point in the podcast.

To help identify the currently playing chapter, the list of chapter markers presented in the app shows a purple equalizer animation on the right of the currently playing chapter.

The animated purple indicator tells you which chapter you're currently listening to

This arks the chapter in a podcast you’re currently listening to

Chapter markers have descriptive names, which doesn’t just benefit listeners but creators as well because podcast chapters are being indexed by search engines, improving SEO.

How do you like enhanced chapter support in iOS 12’s Podcasts app?

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