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13 of the Top News Podcasts – 2020 Edition

Let’s face it. In terms of breaking news, 2020 has been a whopper! From Brexit to Megxit, Coronavirus terror to impeachment woes – there has been no shortage of massive developments and breaking news stories from all around the world, and it’s only March! And as citizens of this crazy, amazing, but sometimes chaotic world, we want reliable news sources to keep us up-to-date with all the latest developments and in-the-know when those breaking news stories hit. But what we definitely don’t want are reports filled up with fake news! We also don’t want to have to sit through the copious repeats of segments on news channels, nor do we have the time to page (or swipe!) through news articles in news publications. No, what we need are reputable, news podcasts giving us access to all the latest stories and developments when and how we want them.

So to help you get exactly what you need, we’ve sifted through the contenders and selected only the best news-related podcasts to ensure that you’ll always be fully aware and well-informed of all that’s happening both nationally as well as globally, making sure that you’ll never be left in the dark or without a clue.

1. The Daily

Hosted by one of the most well-known and reputable news sources out there, The New York Times, The Daily podcast is fast-paced, reliable journalism at it’s finest. Host Michael Barbaro knows that time is money and ensures that all stories are brief and to the point, while still conveying the important details of all the biggest stories. A true journalist, Michael gives us all the information in a manner that everyone will understand. It’s a quick, punchy show, with each episode no longer than 20 minutes, but all the necessary research has been done to ensure that you stay up-to-date with all the tops stories covered by The New York Times. 

2. PBS NewsHour

PBS NewsHour has been a popular place to get your fix of daily news for the past 40 years. They’re known for their comprehensive coverage of any news or events that might be happening all over the world. One of the standout points of this podcast is that they present stories without any political leaning. They report with empathy and consideration, and always with fairness and integrity. They avoid “fluff” and stick to good, old-fashioned, solid reporting. The weekday episodes are 60 minutes long, covering the day’s most important stories. On weekends they also have a 30-minute episode, ensuring that you always stay up to date with the latest news.

3. The Globalist

One of the longest-running news podcasts, The Globalist is also one of the most highly-respected and highly-trusted sources of global news. This show boasts hosts from all over the world, ensuring that you’ll always get a diverse perspective on global issues, as well as exposure to international stories you might not otherwise be aware of. As such, it should be no surprise that their main focus is giving their listeners all the important news from all around the world with diverse opinions, insights, and perspectives. 

4. Time’s The Brief

Time Magazine’s podcast, The Brief, is a great way to catch up on the magazine’s excellent articles on the go. Read by professional voice artists, the narration of each episode is of a really high standard, as well as being rather soothing, making this show a wonderful accompaniment for your commute. You’ll get the gist of the world’s top stories from a variety of fields, as there is no heavy focus on one particular topic. The articles are well-researched and exceptionally-written – this is Time Magazine after all – and you’ll feel well-equipped to discuss the poignant issues with colleagues and friends. This podcast is a really great way to get thorough knowledge of some of the world’s most pressing issues with a show that is a pleasure to listen to.

5. Today, Explained

Brought to us by Vox Media Podcast Network, Today, Explained does just as its name suggests, explains the biggest stories and hottest developments at the end of every weekday. The reporting is stellar, the insights are always on point, and the show has a way of explaining heavy, complicated matters in a way that everyone can understand. The content is easily digested, with just the right amount of humor thrown in the mix, and the variety of guests always adds depth and dynamics to the discussion at hand. It’s a really great way to debrief and process all that takes place around the world in a day.   

6. Up First

Covering the three biggest stories of the day, NPR’s Up First is just what you need to start the day off right. Rachel Martin, David Greene, and Steve Inskeep are the charming weekday hosts, and the new additions of Lulu Garcia-Navarro and Scott Simon will keep you informed and entertained every Saturday. With their episodes being only between 10 to 15 minutes, it’s easy to listen to them while you’re getting ready for the day, and with its unbiased reporting on stories ranging from politics to pop culture, you’ll quickly find this show becoming a part of your morning routine. 

7. Skimm This

Skimm This is the perfect news podcast for those of us who want to be in the know, but have very limited time to do it in. At 5 PM every Monday through Friday, you’ll get all you need to know about everything that has taken place throughout the world, but you’ll also be given the reasons why they matter. The show is upbeat, informative, and gives a really thorough overview of the biggest stories in a really well-written , bite-sized piece of audio. This show is a must for a quick news fix!

8. CBS Evening News

If you’re looking for a news podcast to enjoy while driving home or cooking dinner, then tune in to CBS Evening News. Tune in and listen up to top-notch reporting, giving you an overview of all the big stories at the end of the day. Hosted by Norah O’Donnell, this podcast is a great way to find out what’s happening both nationally and as well as in the world at large. The reports are well-rounded and well-researched, making this an easy listen and a great way to catch up on all the top stories. 

9. BBC Global News Podcast

For some stand-out news reporting from across the pond, look no further than BBC Global News Podcast. This podcast is fast-paced, always relevant, and always engaging, and in 30 minutes, twice on weekdays and once on the weekend, you’ll get succinct coverage of all the latest stories to keep you in the loop. They have been able to capture the crux of all the biggest stories but convey the information in a manner that is upbeat, and occasionally, a little bit cheeky. If you like your news with a little British flare and a spot of English charm, this show should definitely be the one you turn to. 

10. NPR News Now

NPR News Now is the definition of a quick news update, perfect for those who like their news in little bite-size chunks. This show shares the most important news with you in a very brief 5 minutes, but with a new episode launching every hour of every day, making sure that you never fall behind on developing stories or breaking news. This podcast will work perfectly with your schedule; it’s there when you need it and just short enough for you to get your news-focused fix during your coffee break or between tasks. This show will help make sure that you’re always up to date and always in the know, quicker than the time it takes to brew your favorite beverage.

11. Morning Joe

Spend your morning getting informed with Joe Scarborough, Mika Brzezinski, and Willie Geist on Morning Joe. Every morning, these three journalists come together to give you the latest stories and political conversations. All of their episodes are between 30 to 60 minutes and are filled with a thorough analysis of the daily news and diverse opinions and insight into the day’s top stories. There are also plenty of great interviews with prominent politicians, newsmakers and world shakers. It will always ensure an informative start to the day.

12. NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt

NBC Nightly News is a great source of information, and the perfect way to consume your evening news. In each 20 minute episode, host Lester Holt analyzes both national and international events taking place in the day. In his capacity of news reporter, Lester Holt aims to tell all sides to every story and always tries to remain unbiased in his analysis of both local and international events, making him, in the eyes of many, a reliable, dependable source of news and information. 

13. The Takeaway

Last but not least, we have The Takeaway. This show serves as a great companion podcast to most of the shows mentioned on this list. Each episode is filled with in-depth conversations covering all the latest events, and exploring these in greater detail. Host Tanzina Vega is not afraid of controversial topics, but strives to discuss these in a calm and respectful manner. The segments include live reports from out in the field and even segments where the listeners are able to participate in the discussion at hand. Covering local, national, and international news, The Takeaway will ensure that you are always well-informed and understand the intricate details of all that is happening in the world around you. 

Closing Thoughts

Whether you are an avid consumer of the news or avoid it like the Coronavirus for all of it’s negativity, that choice remains yours. However, if you are looking for reliable news sources, free from fake news but filled with up-to-the-minute info and insights, then these podcasts are just what you are looking for. They are a truly great way to be socially aware and in the know about all that’s going on, both nationally as well as globally. All of these shows bring the truth, in-depth analyses, and help us process and digest all that’s going on in this world around us. Backed by highly-skilled journalists, diverse perspectives and (mostly) unbiased viewpoints, they are the perfect source for bringing us some of the biggest stories of our time. They’re just what you need to keep abreast of all the developments and breaking news taking place across our crazy globe. 

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