Knowable launches platform of audio-first educational courses

A new company called Knowable officially launches today, aiming to bridge the gap for audio in educational purposes. It offers a library of courses, ranging from 4 to 8 hours long, hosted by subject experts. The library covers a range of topics with a focus on self-improvement and business subjects that aren’t covered in traditional academic settings. Knowable has secured a funding round of $3.75 million led by Andreesen Horowitz.

The business aims to offer audio-first learning with high production value for courses and a suite of learning tools. It will also have a community angle, with exclusive benefits and discounts for members. For now, people can start listening for free and then must pay a flat fee, currently $100, for full access to each course.

“Despite the explosive growth of podcasts, we haven’t seen much innovation in how people listen to audio,” Knowable Co-Founder and CPO Alex Benzer said. “They’re still a static, one-way experience like radio, which is over 100 years old! We’re excited about developing more interactive and personalized ways to learn through audio.”

The pilot courses are Launch a Startup, with experts including Reddit Founder Alexi Ohanian; Start a Podcast, featuring RadioPublic and PRX Founder Jake Shapiro and Vox Media Senior Audio Producer Jillian Weinberger; and Sleep Better Tonight, with Dr. Fiona Barwick of the Stanford Center for Sleep Sciences and Medicine and Russell Foster of the Oxford Sleep and Circadian Neuroscience Institute.

Anna Washenko