ZCast: Live Podcasting

Screen Shot 2016-01-21 at 8.00.43 PMI just tried a new app called ZCast, and I am so excited about it!  It’s like Periscope or MeerKat, but it is for audio only–for podcasting live to anyone else who has the app.

Tonight I tried listening in to a few of the podcasts, and the quality of the sound was impressive.  I also enjoyed messaging live to the hosts of the podcasts and sharing my perspective with them.

In order to join in the fun, search the Apple App Store for ZCast and download (it was free). Then, connect it to your Twitter account, and you are good to go.  Mostly, I am intrigued by how I can use it in my teaching.

The first thought, of course, was teaching in real time when my classes are cancelled due to weather this winter.  How cool would it be to have my students listening in and chatting while I podcast my class?  It would be a great way to keep everyone moving forward on my syllabus.  The only drawback is that it does not yet support recording those podcasts–so I can can’t archive it for my students to listen to later (I hear that is coming).

Also, I found another drawback as I was trying to participate in the conversation online.  I am lazy.  I don’t actually text–I use the voice to text on my phone.  When I spoke my comments into the little mic on my keyboard, it cut off the audio to the app and I missed what was going on.  I also couldn’t send it in, and ended up redoing my comments.  These are problems that are sure to ironed out, as the app is very very very new.

Meanwhile, I also thought of a great way to use this app for accessibility.  I have a student who is hard of hearing.  In that class, I could use ZCast during my lectures, and my student could listen live on her phone with her headphones–adjusting the volume as she needed.

I’m also thinking about doing a short edtech broadcast with this app, but I will have to work up my nerve and find a quiet space to do it (not easy with so many rugrats running around!)




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