Welcome To Your Personalized Front Page Android Listeners!

Earlier this year we re-envisioned the way listeners discover and consume audio content with our new iOS Front Page. We’ve spent time testing and iterating and are now excited to introduce to you a new version of the Front Page for Android. The Front Page is essentially your personalized audio feed – new episodes from your favorite shows, recommendations, headline news and highlight clips from great episodes.

The ability to discover new shows has long been one of the reasons we hear about why people love Stitcher so we focused on making it even easier with this new version.  We also wanted to make something simple, personalized and delightful to use – we’re looking forward to your feedback. The Front Page is the default screen you see when starting Stitcher and is also accessible from the left pane menu icon. Each episode in the Front Page is algorithmically selected just for you, using our knowledge of your listening behavior and hundreds of millions of listening hours across our entire audience.  Here’s a few tips to help you get started:

  • Tapping on the episode reveals more information about it and gives you access to additional actions such as info and listen later buttons
  • Info Button: opens the show page to be able to access previous episodes of that show
  • Listen Later: Saves the episode to your listen later playlist
  • At the top of your Front Page is a toggle which lets you view just news headlines, similar to the previous version of the Front Page

Take it for a spin and let us know what you think at feedback@stitcher.com.  We’re already working on more improvements so stay tuned. Thanks for listening! The Stitcher Team

Jul01

New on iOS: Headlines Filter, Background Downloading and more!

Today we released an update to our iOS app – available now in the App Store.  Here’s a brief rundown of what’s new:

Front Page Headlines – by popular demand we added the ability to filter your Front Page to view just the short news headlines, similar to previous versions of the app.  We’ve also more than doubled the number of daily headlines. We actually added this filter in our last release but just want to make sure you know about it (pull down on the Front Page to expose toggle)!

Background Downloads – now Stitcher uses the iOS background updating capability to automatically download new episodes of shows in your playlists (for playlists you’ve enabled for offline listening) and keep your Front Page up to date.

Jaguar | Land Rover – if you have a Jaguar | Land Rover vehicle with the MySpin in dash interface, you can now connect and use Stitcher in your car!

Plus a bunch of other stuff:

- Ad frequency bug updates (fixes issues with playing ads after resuming phone calls and more)

- Fixes for shows becoming incorrectly marked as heard after listening

- Enhancements to Ford, GM, Mazda, BMW and MINI integrations

- Other bug fixes and performance improvements

Download the latest version via the App Store today!  Have a feature you’d like to have in Stitcher or problem you’d like to see fixed?  Email us anytime at feedback@stitcher.com or send us feedback directly from within the app via Settings>Help.

Thanks for listening,

The Stitcher Team

Jun18

Stitcher Revenue Sharing

One of our primary goals at Stitcher is to be the best audio platform in the world for our content partners to have their audience enjoy the news, sports, entertainment and talk shows that they create. As part of this goal we are excited to announce our new expanded revenue share program, available to all of our partners.

We want Stitcher to be the number one platform podcasters choose to have their audience hear their content. We highly value this partnership and believe it’s important to help move the industry forward by sharing our revenue with the content providers as we begin to monetize the service.  To our knowledge, we are the only listening platform that has taken this step.

In order to qualify for revenue share, content partners must have a minimum of 5,000 active listeners on Stitcher in a calendar month. Over time, we hope to be able to expand this program to even more content partners but as a small company with limited resources, we think it’s a good place to start.

If you are already a content partner with a show on Stitcher and want to learn more about our revenue share, please visit our Partner FAQ by logging into the Stitcher Partner Portal (http://partners.stitcher.com) where you will find answers to common questions you may have.

We are excited to open this opportunity to our partners and truly value the amazing work they do to bring high quality listening to Stitcher. Here’s to continuing to help grow this industry in the coming months and years.

-The Stitcher Team


To qualify, a partner must have 5,000 or more active listeners a month on Stitcher.

Active listeners are defined as listener who play more than 30 seconds of a piece of audio and have listened in the current calendar month.

Jun05

Advertising on Stitcher

As you may have noticed, the amount and frequency of advertising on Stitcher has increased in recent weeks.  Advertising is an integral part of our business model, enabling us to continue to provide the Stitcher service for free, however I wanted to acknowledge some growing pains as we’ve rolled this out and offer my sincere apologies.

The good news is there is rapidly growing interest from advertisers looking to reach Stitcher listeners.  This in turn has required us to accelerate our learning around the best way to deliver this advertising and preserve the listening experience you’ve come to expect from Stitcher.

Among the many things we have developed at Stitcher is a technology for delivering advertising throughout our app.  As the advertising volume in the past weeks has increased, we have seen instances of our ad system performing in unexpected and sometimes suboptimal ways, for example by delivering ads at less than ideal times, serving repetitive ads, and other issues.  As a result, we have committed to partner with Google for all our ad serving moving forward.  They are the leader in the space, and integrating their technology will be a major step forward to help alleviate many of these issues.  It will take us a bit of time to complete this integration, but it is a top priority for us to ensure we bring you the very best experience possible on Stitcher.  Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding as we make the transition.

We’ve also been listening to your feedback on Stitcher Plus – obviously some of you have already chosen that option for enjoying ad free listening on Stitcher.  Keep the feedback coming and it’s possible we will be evolving the Stitcher Plus offering in the coming months as well.  This option is currently available on iOS and we are actively evaluating how we can bring to Android – stay tuned.

Finally, we want to make you aware that we share our revenue with our content partners – and to our knowledge, we are the only service doing so.  We recently expanded the program to include more of our content partners.  We will continue to grow this revenue sharing program as we grow.  You should know that by listening on Stitcher you’re also supporting the content producers themselves.  We’re dedicated to growing this industry for everyone.

Again, our apologies for the bumpy transition.  We appreciate your candid feedback and will continue to work to find the right balance for advertising on Stitcher.

Thanks for listening!

Noah Shanok

Co-founder & CEO

Jun02

Listen Later – Now on Your Favorite Websites!

We’re excited to announce the launch of a first ever Listen Later feature that revolutionizes the personal playlist by enabling web-surfers to shift the spoken word audio content and podcast episodes that they discover online to their mobile phones and to times when listening is more convenient for them.

What is Listen Later?
It’s like Pocket or Instapaper but for audio. Through an embeddable button added by websites to their online episodes, the new Listen Later feature enables visitors to the sites of radio producers like Science Friday or FOX News Radio to save episodes of their popular shows and the audio portions of articles to their Listen Later playlists on Stitcher.

Why is Listen Later Needed for Audio Listening?
Since launching Listen Later inside of Stitcher’s mobile apps earlier this year, we’ve seen large numbers of listeners save interesting episodes so that they can shift their listening to times that work better for them – like their commute.  People’s browsing often happens at different times than their listening and without a save for later feature like this, many would-be listeners choose not to listen at all.

Where Can Listeners Find Listen Later Buttons?
Listen Later is already integrated into many popular websites. Also available today, Listen Later is integrated throughout Stitcher’s own website, allowing anyone to begin building a Listen Later playlist based on the stories they discover there.

Who’s Partnering with us at Launch?
The feature is live as of 9am EST this morning, so if you’re interested we encourage you to check it out. You can see it on sites like:

Science Friday

StoryCorps

Smodcast

Fox News Radio

Heritage Radio Network

May08

Eight Stitcher Tips for Android

The magic of 25,000+ voices just got a little easier to wield with the latest Stitcher release for Android. There are novel features for both new and long time listeners to adjust to and master. We’ve placed a few tips within the app for new users and those who are upgrading and wanted to provide a little more detail here on how to get the best out of Stitcher and out of your podcasts.

1.  Using the new Menu

The new left-drawer menu streamlines access to all of your content – the Front Page, your playlists, Browse Shows and Listen Later – from anywhere in the app*.

> Tip:  Simply place your thumb on the far left side of your screen (all the way to the edge) and swipe right.

* If you are navigating within the player, you must first close the player by tapping the “X” in the top left corner before you can swipe right to access the menu.

2.  Player & Mini Player

Stitcher is built on the core principle that we want you to be able to have two seamless experiences: playing your podcasts and discovering new shows. With the player & mini player we’ve made it possible to always be able to access the episode that is playing and the player controls from anywhere in the app. Whenever something is playing, it will appear in the mini player.

> Tip:  Expanding the full player grants you access to more details about the episode, previous episodes, and extended player controls.

3. Browse Shows

Looking for new shows or types of podcasts to listen to? Dive into Stitcher’s endless audio content and find exactly what you’re looking for in Browse Shows. As we work towards a more visually unified application, we did something recently that we’re really proud of: we redesigned our category lists within Browse Shows – check them out and let us know what you think!

> Tip: Access browse shows from the left drawer menu, tap into a station until you see a list of episodes. From the list of episodes, you can tap on the settings menu in the top right corner of the episode to add it directly to your Listen Later playlist.

4.  Building a Playlist

With Stitcher, you can save all of your favorite shows to playlists to keep them organized and easily accessible. Your playlists consist of the most recent episode of every show you save – so you’re always up-to-date. Get started by accessing the show page of any podcast you’re interested in by tapping the “Info” button, then select the “+” button adjacent the show name to add it to your playlist.

- To edit your playlist, first open it, then tap the three bar settings icon in the top right of the playlist. From here you can edit the order, delete shows, rename your playlist, or access offline listening settings.

> Tip: Open your playlist and tap the three bar settings icon on the first show. From here, you can directly play that episode and it will play through your entire playlist – skipping over the episodes you’ve already heard.

5.  Listen Later

Listen Later lets you save individual episodes to a playlist on the go! Whenever you’re browsing and you see an episode you want to check out at a later time, simply add it to your Listen Later playlist which you can access from the new drawer menu. Here are a few pointers:

You can add a an episode to your listen later playlist virtually anywhere, from the show page or by tapping the menu icon that appears to the right of the item.

- After you play an item in the Listen Later playlist it automatically gets archived to the bottom of the list.

- Remove episodes by tapping the settings menu to the right of the list item.

> Tip:  Set your Listen Later playlist to be available offline, that way, you can add episodes directly to the list and wherever you are you’ll be able to access the episodes you want to listen to!

6.  Offline Listening

You can download all of the episodes in your playlists to listen offline when you are out of network or can’t connect to Wi-Fi.  Depending on your settings, whenever Stitcher refreshes it will make sure your playlists are up-to-date by automatically downloading the most recent episode of each given show in that playlist.

> Tips: Open the playlist you want to make available offline and simply flip the toggle to “ON.”

7. Heard or Unheard?

It’s easy to keep track of your listening status with Stitcher. The solid blue circle on an episode means it’s unheard, partially filled means partially heard, and if it’s empty save a faint outline it’s completely heard.

8.  Sleep Timer!

Dear Stitcher Listeners, Mom, Dad and the general public: sleep timer for android is finally here! For all those of you who enjoy a soothing and entertaining way to fall asleep at night, you can ensure you don’t miss too much of your show with the sleep timer.

Tip: Play any show, expand the player, tap the up arrows in the middle of the control bar – then select the amount of time before you want Stitcher to pause. Sweet dreams!

May05

Stitcher’s a Webby Award Finalist – Vote to help us win!

We are very proud to announce our selection as a Webby Award nominee in the Mobile & Apps: Podcast category!  As one of 5 nominees, it’s a fantastic honor and we want to thank you for making it possible.

Here at Stitcher we are all massive fans of spoken word radio and podcasting, and collectively work every day to connect our listeners to the world’s best content. We are amazed at how creative our community is, and feel incredibly lucky to be working with the most talented podcasters out there to inform and entertain on a daily basis.

We need your help to win the Webbys People’s Voice Award!  The People’s Voice Award is an opportunity for the community to support their favorite apps and virtually high-five the people behind it.  Don’t leave us hanging!

If you love Stitcher, we’d appreciate you taking a minute to help us win. Just click here to cast your vote!

Thanks and Cheers,

The Stitcher Team

Apr11

Ten Stitcher for iOS Tips

As with any product launch, there are new features to check out and changes for new and long time listeners to digest and get used to.  With the latest Stitcher for iOS launch, an all new redesign, there’s a lot more than usual!  We’ve added some tips for upgrading and new users in the app itself but also wanted to provide some additional info here on our blog to help with the transition.  Here’s 10 Tips & Tricks to help you get the most out of Stitcher.

1.  Using the new Menu

One of the key changes to the new app is a change in the menu – from a dashboard style to a slide out panel on the left side of the app.  The main motivation for this change was to make it quicker and easier to get to your playlists.

> Tip:  Swipe left to right anywhere in the app to expand the menu and access your playlists.

2.  The New Front Page

The new My Front Page feature takes the curated news stories you are used to and adds in new episodes of your favorites as they become available and recommendations based on your past listening or even your location.  And that’s just the beginning – we’ll be adding more great stuff like what your friends are listening to over time.  As you use the app it gets smarter about what to put into this personalized audio feed.

> Tip:  Pull to refresh for the latest content and if you see stuff you like but don’t have time to listen to, tap Listen Later to add it to your Listen Later playlist.

3.  Player & Mini Player

In the new version of Stitcher, we wanted to make it easy to see and pause what’s now playing from anywhere in the app.  When something is playing, a mini player bar appears at the bottom of the screen with this information.  When you start up the app, it automatically loads whatever you were playing last so you can pick up where you left off.

> Tips:  Swipe up on the mini player to expand to full Now Playing view, swipe down on that view to collapse back to the mini player.  In the full Now Playing view, swipe the player controls up to access progress bar, volume, car mode and more.

4.  Episode cards

Episode “cards” are used throughout the app – on My Front Page, in the Now Playing view, as well as on Show Information pages.  They typically have the following elements:

- Top band with Show name – tap this to go directly to the Show Information page

- Image – either an episode specific image or a show image/album art

- Episode title & duration information

- Listen and Listen Later buttons

> Tip:  Tap an episode card to reveal the expanded episode description.

5.  Building a Playlist

For long time Stitcher listeners, managing your playlists should feel very familiar.  For new listeners, playlists allow you to create lists of your favorite shows that are always updated with the latest episode.  Playing a playlist plays the latest episode of each show in the list.  A few pointers:

- To add shows to your playlists, tap the + button wherever you see it

- To edit your playlists, tap the gear icon on any playlist, then tap Edit

- To set a playlist to download the latest episodes, tap the gear icon and turn ‘Available Offline’ ON

- To refresh a playlist to get the latest episodes, pull down on the list

> Tip:  Tap the description area to access additional episode details and options.  Tap the play button on the right side to start playing immediately.

6.  Show Information Pages

As you browse the app, you’ll find that each show (i.e. “Radiolab”) has its own “Show Information” page.  From these pages you can:

- See a list of current and previous episodes to listen to

- Add a show to a playlist (use the “+” button in the upper right)

- Add any episode to your Listen Later playlist

- Discover similar shows by tapping the “Listeners also like” section

> Tip:  Playing a past episode from the Show Information page will play that episode and then continue through unheard episodes from your selection through newest.  You can change this playback direction in Settings>General>PlayBack Behavior.

7.  Listen Later

We’ve made the Listen Later button available everywhere so it’s easier than ever to save episodes that look interesting when you don’t have time in the moment to listen.  Your Listen Later playlist is accessible in the menu.  Unlike your other playlists, Listen Later is a playlist of episodes (your other playlists are lists of Shows that play the latest episode of each).

> Tips: Tap the gear icon on the Listen Later playlist to set your playlist to download for offline listening or to Edit which allows you to reorder or delete episodes.

8.  Offline Listening

Stitcher allows you to download episodes in your playlists for offline listening (i.e. when you don’t have a Wi-Fi or cellular network data connection).  To enable any playlist for offline listening, tap the gear icon on a playlist or visit Settings>Offline Listening.

> Tip:  Stitcher downloads the most recent episode of the shows in your playlist (or your specific saved episode in the case of the Listen Later playlist) when you start the app.  Pulling to refresh on a playlist view will also check for and download new episodes.

9.  Heard or unheard?

The Play button is also designed to let you know whether you’ve heard an episode or not.  If it’s solid blue it’s unheard, if partially filled it is partially heard and if it is just a blue circle outline it’s fully heard.  Green variations mean that the episode has been downloaded for listening offline.

10.  Stitcher Plus

Stitcher Plus is our premium service that allows you to listen to Stitcher without additional banner or audio ads. Note however that we cannot remove ads that are added by the podcasters themselves. For only $5.99 you can listen to Stitcher ad-free for 3 full months.

> Tip:  Sign up for Stitcher Plus in the app by going to Settings in the menu and selecting “Stitcher Plus”.

Mar28

The All New Stitcher for iOS is here!

Last year we kicked off a project designed to incorporate everything we’ve learned about how listeners use our product and where we see the on demand radio space headed into a completely redesigned and reimagined Stitcher experience.  It’s something we’d been designing since well before that kick off and something we’re super excited to deliver to you today – the all new Stitcher for iOS.  At a high level we wanted to make Stitcher even more:


Simple > Make getting started easy, create a gradual discovery process for advanced functionality and remove unused features.

Personalized > Make it quicker and easier to access the content you already love and help you discover new content you’ll soon love.

Delightful > Build something delightful to use with compelling visual design, imagery and subtle but useful animations.


To help us achieve these goals, here are a few of the things we are launching in this new version:

  • My Front Page – We’ve reimagined the front page as your personal audio feed.  With new episodes from your favorites, recommendations based on your listening as well as headline news and trending stories, it lets you pop open Stitcher and instantly start listening to fresh, personalized content.
  • Simplified Navigation – Access your playlists with a single swipe from anywhere in the app.
  • Redesigned Player Controls – New Mini Player lets you always see and control what’s playing.  Swipe the Mini Player up to access the full Now Playing view, then swipe down to minimize.  You can now access car mode and sleep timer via the Now Playing screen.
  • Last Played – The new Mini Player automatically loads whatever you were playing last so you can jump right back in, right where you left off.
  • More Past Episodes – New show info pages let you access more past episodes than ever before – easily listen, share or save them to your Listen Later playlist.
  • Recommendations – Better recommendations, delivered to you on your Front Page as well as on individual show pages – for example discover what listeners of This American Life also like to listen to.
  • Simplified Playlists – Easier than ever to access, set for offline listening, and manage your favorite shows in playlists.
  • Designed for iOS7 – Visually refreshed to take advantage of iOS7 design cues and technologically refreshed to leverage underlying iOS7 technologies.
  • Listen Later – Easily add episodes from anywhere to your Listen Later playlist – from the Front Page, your playlists, and past episode lists.  Even set it to download for listening to these episodes offline.
  • Seamless Refresh – Stitcher seamlessly refreshes and now lets you pull to refresh so you always have the latest episodes available.
  • Refreshed iPad App – Oh yeah, a fully updated iPad app as well.

Let us know what you think at feedback@stitcher.com (appreciate feedback here instead of the App Store where we can’t follow up to help diagnose any issues) and check out our Tips & Tricks blog post to quickly get up to speed with the new version!

Thanks for listening!

The Stitcher Team

Mar28

Stitcher for Android Adds Unlimited Episodes + Listen Later

Today, Stitcher for Android is updated to include not just access to almost any episode of your favorite shows (even episodes from years ago) but also adds the ability for you to quickly add any episode to a ‘Listen Later’ playlist.

While browsing episodes on Stitcher, if you see something you like but don’t have time to listen at the moment, simply add it to  Listen Later by using the large icons or context menus.  These episodes will be saved to a new playlist accessible through your main navigation drawer.  Then come back and listen later when you have time. If you’ve ever used apps like Instapaper or Pocket, you’ll be familiar with this way of saving interesting content for later.  Start building your listening to-do list.

Download the latest Android update to get the following features:

  • Listen Later
  • Unlimited Past Episodes
  • Improved!  As usual, a number of bug fixes and performance improvements.

The free Stitcher App is available for all Android listeners and can be downloaded from the Google Play Store at https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.stitcher.app&hl=en

Happy Listening,

The Stitcher Team

Feb21

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