I sync an iPod Touch with the latest iOS (11.2.2) to the latest iTunes (184.108.40.206) on Windows 10.
I download and delete podcasts manually in iTunes. I have podcast playlists in iTunes, but since Apple removed podcast playlists from recent versions of iOS, these are not available on the Touch.
I have determined that setting up a Station on the Touch to play all available (downloaded) episodes from oldest to newest will replicate the playlist functionality. However, the Touch includes duplicates of many podcasts, with a Cloud icon next to them, which interferes with the playlist. All the podcasts I have downloaded in iTunes are synced to the Touch and these are the ones I want to play. I don't want to or need to download anything on the Touch directly ever.
Short of regularly having to manually delete each "Cloud" podcast for every subscription, is there a way to completely disable the podcast Cloud/download functionality in iOS?
Edit: There seems to be an inconsistency between podcast subscriptions in iTunes and the Touch. Podcasts I have unsubscribed from and deleted in iTunes still appear as subscribed on the Touch and the subscribed/unsubscribed status of some podcasts differs between iTunes and the Touch. Possibly the Touch maintains its own list of subscribed podcasts?