If I click a link to download something, then go to the next article in the feed, the download sometimes does not start. I have to wait for the download to start before navigating away. There isn't a way to reliably see if the download started without switching to the Downloads tab, scrolling down, then switching back to the news tab. Maybe you can fix QuiteRSS to download the content even if I have navigated away from the article. You can display a message if there was a problem downloading. This way I don't have to wait for downloading to start before reading the next article.
This is normal behavior. It is necessary to wait for a response from the server.
Maybe there can be an indicator showing when the current item has started downloading, so we know when it's safe to continue to the next article?
It is not a reliable indicator because if other downloads are already happening, one might finish right before the new one starts so the count doesn't change. I see this all the time and have to switch to the Downloads tab to confirm that the download actually started. It would be nice if this was automated somehow so I don't have to watch carefully and check the Downloads tab.
In older versions of QuiteRSS, did the tab show the estimated time remaining?
This might belong in the Suggestions forum.
Thnking about the problem a little more, users shouldn't have to wait for the download to start before going to the next article. When "Link to audio" is clicked, the URL could be placed on a queue and handled without blocking the UI. The application would appear to be more responsive without the need for users to carefully monitor and check the status of downloads.
I hope you will considering this as a feature for QuiteRSS in a later version.