Instant podcasting with Cinch

cinchbtr I’m trying out a free tool that lets me record my voice over the phone and then makes that recording instantly available via RSS.

The tool is Cinch from Blogtalk Radio. Blogtalk Radio is a service I know well as it’s the one Shel and I use for our monthly FIR Live on Blogtalk Radio shows (the next one is on March 18, btw).

This is not new, you might say: there are other services where you can do something similar. For instance, Utterli springs to mind.

True, it’s not new – it first appeared in early 2008 – but I don’t think it nor anyone else is claiming that it is.

I like it for its simplicity. Unlike some other services, Cinch doesn’t require you to do anything other than phone its number and talk. That’s it. No registration, no profiles to complete, none of that is required to use the service, which is free apart from the cost of a phone call to a US number (area code 646).

You do have the option, though, to register a phone number with Cinch and then assign that number to an identity you create as a web address, a URL. That way, your recordings’ RSS feed can be identified by that URL rather than a phone number.

So, for instance, rather than

I tried it from Skype and it works just fine as my Skype account is set to identify calls I make to regular phone numbers by its SkypeOut caller ID.

You can listen to that test recording in the player, above (if you don’t see the embedded Flash player, which you may not if you’re reading this post in your RSS reader, download the MP3 file: it’s short, about 2 minutes).

Cinch is a neat service. I could imagine using it as a highly casual form of instant podcasting. I could also imagine using it in the workplace for verbal notes, for instance, that you might want to share with colleagues via the RSS feed that they’d subscribe to. You can pull it into your Friendfeed and other social aggregators for sharing.

Podcasting without any equipment, just a phone. Not a bad idea. How easier does it get?

(HT: Fred Zelders)

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