The company announced Monday that it will be the exclusive streaming partner of Serial and radio show This American Life.
Beginning Nov. 24, the first season of Serial will become available in full on Pandora. The second season will then debut on the platform at an undisclosed date, with new episodes becoming available every Thursday at 6 a.m. ET. New and old episodes will continue to be available via the Serial podcast feed.
“Serial season one was a phenomenon and we at Pandora are among the many eagerly anticipating season two,” said Pandora CEO Brian McAndrews. “We think our listeners will love Serial and look forward to helping build its growing number of fans.”
This American Life, the long-running radio program hosted by Ira Glass, will begin streaming on Pandora in 2016.
“For people already listening to Serial and This American Life, nothing will change,” said Glass, who also serves as editorial advisor to Serial. “But we believe lots of people who’d like our shows simply haven’t heard of them, or haven’t started listening to podcasts. Serial is the biggest podcast in the world, but only 17 percent of Americans listen to podcasts at all. That’s why it’s so exciting for us to work with Pandora. Pandora reaches millions of people who never listen to public radio or download podcasts. This’ll get our shows to them.”
Serial was created as a podcast-only spinoff of This American Life last year from producer Sarah Koenig. The 12-part first season, which investigated whether Adnan Syed was guilty of killing his ex-girlfriend Hay Min Lee in 1999, became an instant hit and increased the visibility of podcasting. It has been downloaded more than 100 million times since its October 2014 premiere.
Distribution on Pandora, which has 78 million monthly listeners, will give the podcast even greater reach ahead of its second season, which will focus on the Bowe Bergdahl case. The Pandora news comes a little more than a month after Serial announced that it would make the jump to TV with an adaptation from Phil Lord and Christopher Miller.