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SocialTVNews
A collection of news stories covering the SocialTV revolution
Curated by Tony Obregon
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Social TV app Zeebox lands in U.S. with programmer backing

Social TV app Zeebox lands in U.S. with programmer backing | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Second-screen TV app Zeebox, which touts itself as new way for TV viewers to find and discover content, is landing in the U.S. with the backing of 30 broadcasters, including Comcast Cable, NBCUniversal, HBO, and Cinemax.


With more than 1.5 million users in the U.K., the free Zeebox app for Android and iOS devices seeks to marry TV programming information with interactive features, including social networks such as Facebook and Twitter.

 

The new app is likely to blend well with the activities of millions who already use portable devices in conjunction with TV viewing; a recent Nielsen survey found that 86 percent of tablet owners and 84 percent of smartphone users checked their mobile devices while watching TV.

 

Read the full article at http://news.cnet.com/8301-1023_3-57521105-93/social-tv-app-zeebox-lands-in-u.s-with-programmer-backing/. ;

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With 3 Million Users, GetGlue Goes Big With A New Social TV App Built Just For The iPad | TechCrunch

With 3 Million Users, GetGlue Goes Big With A New Social TV App Built Just For The iPad | TechCrunch | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Social TV app maker GetGlue is already successful, with 3 million users and more than 500 million interactions with its mobile apps. That includes check-ins, likes, and reviews of TV shows and movies, showing pretty good engagement for its existing user base. But now it’s coming out with an iPad app that it believes will go above and beyond what it’s users have been able to do on the smaller screen.

 

GetGlue HD focuses on content discovery, providing a more personalized experience for its users, allowing them to get information and personalized recommendations for TV shows. It takes advantage of a user’s previous check-in data, as well as likes and ratings, to determine which shows at any given time a user might like. The whole idea is to re-imagine the electronic program guide — you know, that crappy interface on your cable set-top box you can never find anything on.

 

Users get recommendations not just for that night or even that week, but also get updates and can receive notifications about upcoming television shows and premieres well in advance. It also gives advanced information about certain types of events — for example, the score of the local baseball game or reviews for new movies coming out over the weekend. Users can also find new shows on streaming services like iTunes, Netflix, and Amazon.

 

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Social TV: Why It's the Next Big Thing... Will You Be Able to Play Along With Your Favorite Shows?

Social TV: Why It's the Next Big Thing... Will You Be Able to Play Along With Your Favorite Shows? | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

The television industry today is at the beginning of a major transformation that will dramatically change the way people watch television, similar to what we saw happen with the development of interactivity on mobile phones in 2008. In the three years that followed, more than 200M iPhones downloaded 15B apps, and the way people used their phones was forever changed.

 

This new transformation in television is known as Social TV and it brings together television, the best audience maker; with the Internet, the best social and frictionless monetization tool. As a result of this combination, we will see the growth of a new multi-billion dollar Social TV market over the next several years. And within the next 18 months, it's highly likely that most game shows, sports broadcasts, and reality TV shows will offer some type of play along experience.

 

Read the full article at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/laurant-weill/social-tv_b_1579423.html. ;

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How's This for Complexity? The Social TV Ecosystem

How's This for Complexity? The Social TV Ecosystem | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

I attended and spoke at various Social TV-oriented conferences in the past few weeks, such as the Future of Media Conference at Stanford and TV Next in Boston. One thing is very clear: the Social TV ecosystem is both increasingly complex and fast moving. Every time I attend a conference, I run into yet more new companies, more entrepreneurs with more creative ideas and more investors looking for the next big thing. That’s exciting – it’s a sign that a brand new market is on the verge of taking off. Reminds me of the early days of the Internet in the mid-90’s.
The intersection between “social” and TV is indeed gathering momentum. According to BlueFin Labs data, the number of social comments around the Super Bowl exploded from a mere 1.8 million in 2011, to over 12 million in 2012. This is just one example of an exponential growth, indicating that consumer TV-viewing habits are changing fast.
Whether Social TV will actually reach the $12 billion mark that Jack Myers predicts, there’s no question that there exists many monetization opportunities in the merging of social interaction and TV shows. This fact has sent venture capitalists, cable companies, and TV networks digging into their pockets to fund their application of choice. I expect that the other side of the Social TV equation – that is, social networks like Twitter or Facebook – will be making similar strategic moves in the near future.
What seemed to be a few Social TV startups offering “second screen apps” just a year ago, has grown into quite a complex group of businesses all addressing various aspects of the Social TV pie. The infographic below is my first attempt at clarifying the Social TV Ecosystem by categorizing the various players. I view this list as a starting point for discussion – comments, additions, suggestions for revisions, disagreements – all are welcome.

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Beet.TV: KIT Digital Readies "Social" Video Program Guide

Global video management software firm KIT Digital has created a "social" TV electronic program guide, says KIT's Alan Wolk, Global Lead Analyst in this video interview.

 

KIT Digital has built its own white label social electronic program guide that it will market to network operators and service providers, Wolk said.

So far, social TV apps have been limited in scope because many of them require the viewer to respond immediately or to push out updates to social networks rather than pulling in information, he explained. But most consumers first turn to social media for input on what to watch well before they decide what show to tune in and the next generation of social guides need to incorporate that behavior, he said.

 

"All the big pay TV providers are looking in that direction," he said. "They realize [social TV] is a great retention device."

 

KIT Digital is well-positioned for social TV growth. The company reported preliminary earnings earlier this week of more than $70 million for the fourth quarter, ahead of its guidance and an 82% jump from the year-ago period.

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Turner To Launch Social TV App for Conan Tied to Connected TV Audio Recognition Technology

Turner To Launch Social TV App for Conan Tied to Connected TV Audio Recognition Technology | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Starting on Monday, Coco’s getting his own app. And like the Harvard educated funnyman, this app’s going to be pretty clever.

As part of a major push by Turner’s entertainment networks to embrace second screen viewing and smart TVs, TBS is planning to introduce complementary content and eventually ad messages to a slew of its shows, starting with a tablet app designed to be accessed during episodes of TBS’ Conan.
Using audio recognition technology (similar to the technology employed by the popular smartphone app Shazam ), each episode of Conan will be fingerprinted. As a result, users of the new Conan app will be periodically greeted with pop-ups within the app featuring information relevant to the show, such as facts about a guest’s movie career.

And soon enough, viewers will be able to buy tickets to those guests’ movies via the app. At a mini conference centered on media convergence held at the Time Warner Center in New York on Monday, Turner executives showed a mockup of potential Conan commerce integration. During a demo clip, as actress Ellie Kemper of Bridesmaids sat down with host Conan O'Brien, viewers were prompted to purchase tickets to Bridesmaids via the Conan app.
The Bridesmaids example was theoretical, but Dennis Adamovich, Turner’s svp of brand and digital activation said that such ad integrations would be available during the upcoming TV upfront. So will Turner’s new daily deals offerings. Starting this April, viewers watching shows like TBS staple Everybody Loves Raymond will start seeing daily offers pop up on the bottom of their screen – provided they are one of the first to purchase a new line of smart/connected TVs from Vizio and several other manufacturers.
TBS and TNT also plan to start building ads into its companion apps for the shows The Big Bang Theory and Leverage tied to TV spots airing during those shows. For example, ads for advertisers like Twizzlers or Little Caesar’s could prompt viewers to provide their email address or phone number via the companion app to receive a quick coupon.


Via Virginie Colnel
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The Race For The Second Screen: Five Apps That Are Shaping Social TV

The Race For The Second Screen: Five Apps That Are Shaping Social TV | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Co-viewing. Back channeling. Checking in. Double- or triple-screening. Layered content. The increasing symbiosis between good old traditional TV and the social world will be one of the most interesting media trends to watch this year. In this three-part series, Co.Create looks at the world of social TV from a few different angles. First up: the apps.

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Tony Obregon's comment, February 7, 2012 11:53 AM
Good read on various approaches to social TV and the top apps leading the way.
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Social TV Grows Up: Communities and Advertisers Flock

Social TV Grows Up: Communities and Advertisers Flock | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Several applications have sprung up that tie real-world actions to online communities, and allow for an experience that goes beyond the TV screen and into the palm of viewers’ hands. Here are a few applications that we see as category leaders...

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» Comcast reveals social TV plans in patent application

» Comcast reveals social TV plans in patent application | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

A patent application obtained by the site FierceCable reveals that Comcast is planning to add a number of social TV features in its program guides that are staples of many second-screen apps. For example, viewers could receive notifications when their friends are watching a particular show, see trending shows in their city, as well as win rewards (like badges, coupons or a discount on their cable bill) for recommending shows to their friends or watching a particular show a certain number of times.

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Comcast has Social TV strategy that Rewards Subscribers

Comcast has Social TV strategy that Rewards Subscribers | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) is developing technology that would allow it to notify subscribers when their friends begin watching a particular TV show or movie, and reward customers with discounts Read more >>...


Via Nicholas Barr
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Flingo Simplifies Sharing On Connected TVs - Forbes

Flingo Simplifies Sharing On Connected TVs - Forbes | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it
Startup Flingo has a new service called SyncApps that uses 'automatic content recognition' technology to recognize a live television show within a few seconds.
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Shazam Makes Its Big TV Push, Says App Can Now Tag Any Show On Any Channel | TechCrunch

Shazam Makes Its Big TV Push, Says App Can Now Tag Any Show On Any Channel | TechCrunch | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Shazam just announced that it’s expanding its TV efforts beyond individual partnerships. Chief Revenue Officer Doug Garland says the company has created a comprehensive experience for TV, allowing users to tag any show on any channel. This functionality is actually live in the current version of the app — Shazam just waited a little while to announce it. (Unable to resist the pun, Garland says, “We were getting it ready for prime time.”)

 

When you’re watching a show, you should be able to tag it the same way you’d tag a song, by opening the Shazam app and tapping the big button. In this case, it’s not really about identifying the show (since you probably know that already). Instead, it offers cast information, trivia, celebrity buzz, live Twitter feeds — and yes, it can also identify featured music.

 

In some ways, this sounds like a bigger challenge than audio tagging, because, as Garland puts it, Shazam For TV is not just “pre-ingesting” music “well ahead of the time” — it allows users to tag live content, and to do that it’s processing footage. The company says users can now tag content from 160 U.S. channels, though the app won’t work for some local-only content. And it seems to be focused on live TV for now — I tested the app out with episodes I’ve downloaded from iTunes, and it mostly whiffed.

 

The description of Shazam’s technology reminded me of social TV app IntoNow, which also identifies TV shows based on sound, and which was acquired last year by Yahoo. Garland says Shazam has a big advantage over TV-only apps, because it already has an enormous audience on the music side.

 

“When we talk to Fox, we did for American Idol, we can tell them that we bring not just a great platform and an engaging user experience — we have massive reach,” he says.

 

Speaking of reach, Shazam is also announcing that it has been used (not just downloaded, but actually used to tag content) by 250 million people worldwide.

 

The app is also becoming more social. The company says users will now be able to see what their Facebook friends are tagging, and to comment on those tags. Plus, users’ tags will appear in their Facebook timelines.

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End of Channel Surfing?

End of Channel Surfing? | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Social-networking sites like Facebook and Twitter have given television viewers a virtual water cooler to chitchat about their favorite shows. Now some companies are trying to extend that digital outlet a step further by reinventing the way people find TV programs.

 

App developers are updating the traditional channel guide to show viewers programs that are uniquely relevant to them based on their social circles.

 

Instead of channel-surfing or scrolling through a long list of shows, viewers can use these mobile apps to display shows that they or their friends like based on their preferences. Some of the apps integrate with Facebook's social network to identify and recommend TV shows and sports teams liked on the social network.

 

"We can help people discover what to watch in a fundamentally new way," Alex Iskold, chief executive of Adaptive Blue Inc., a New York-based maker of social TV app GetGlue. "When you sit down on the couch, you're wondering, 'What do I watch?' These kinds of guides are going to become pretty ubiquitous."

 

The apps extend the "social TV" movement that began a few years ago when developers started building apps that let people "check in," or tell their friends what shows they were watching in real-time. The idea was to replicate the success of start-ups like Foursquare Labs Inc., whose mobile app lets people virtually check in to a location and broadcast that information to their friends.

 

These app developers found, however, that the "check-in" never created enough critical mass to create a viable social TV community on its own.

 

Mr. Iskold said the check-in was just the foundation for creating a broader shift in how people watch and find new content. The company's original app, which has been downloaded about 3 million times, allowed people to check in to shows and join a real-time chat with others that did the same.

 

In coming weeks, GetGlue plans to relaunch its app as a social TV guide that will show a scrolling calendar with the shows, movies and sports that users' might like. It will show whether friends who use the app are watching the same show.

 

Read the entire article at http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390443545504577567620103762882.html.

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Mad Men mania: 4 social TV apps for Draper fans

Mad Men mania: 4 social TV apps for Draper fans | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Tweeting while watching TV is so 2011. For many the days of the one-screen TV-watching experience are gone forever, but now technology companies are upping the ante with show-specific and rewards-based social sharing apps – so-called social TV apps – to extend your viewing experience.

Leading the charge is GetGlue (iOS/Android), which encourages fans to check in and unlock secret stickers and other rewards while watching or learning about TV, movies and music. Leading up to the new season premiere of Mad Men this Sunday, more than 200,000 people have checked in to watch the show's trailer and unlock an exclusive sticker from the producers at AMC. However, there isn't just one kind of sticker, there are a host of choices including the Mad Men Superfan sticker, which requires 15 check-ins. When you unlock 20 stickers or more you get real stickers (just like when you were a kid) mailed to your home.

Miso (iOs) also relies on the check-in philosophy, but this social TV app also points you to songs from your favourite shows, actor trivia and real-time polls to choose your winner across multiple reality programs. During the 2012 Oscars Miso launched a viewing party (sponsored by Hyundai) so viewers could connect to get exclusive red carpet access and commentary for the Academy Awards.

Peel (iOS and Android) has also made headlines with an app that encourages you to share shows you’re watching and find out what folks in your social networks are viewing. The app also learns about your TV preferences the more you interact with it, so it can recommend programs you might like. And while it’s not Mad Men related, we’d be remiss to ignore fans of American Idol, who will likely enjoy a new Peel feature: the Idol Interactive Experience. This game within the app that allows you to cheer or boo the show's contestants and judges. In other words, there's more to this download than simply checking in, allowing for real-time engagement and commentary with other viewers.

And don't forget the original app for social TV: Twitter. Just this week Mashable reported the season two finale of Pretty Little Liars broke a social media TV record. During the first broadcast of the show fans sent more than 600,000 messages, averaging around 32,000 tweets per minute. Many Twitter users are also getting creative when it comes to following their top shows. Some Mad Men fans have taken to tweeting as the show's characters: Love Better Draper Francis? Follow her @bettydraper to find out how the 1960s Junior Leaguer participates in the social sphere. “Betty,” who is actually Helen Klein Ross of Brand Factory Fiction, recently did a SXSW presentation about her social storytelling experiment.

Social TV looks to be getting bigger, better and more immersive, just don’t forget to pay attention to the show every once and a while, or you might miss the reason for some of those LOLs.

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MTV Debuts Social TV Mobile App at Mobile World Congress | Adweek

MTV Debuts Social TV Mobile App at Mobile World Congress | Adweek | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Television may soon regain its place as a social linchpin—at least for those in MTV's youth demographic. Gone (for the most part) are the days when family members would gather around a television set to watch and comment on programming, but with a new product being offered across the pond by Viacom's MTV and digital agency AKQA, this kind of sharing experience will have a new home on mobile device screens, rather than the living room couch.


At the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, MTV and AKQA today debuted "MTV Under the Thumb," a social sharing tool that will allow users to view MTV network content on their mobile devices, tap distant friends to view it with them, and dialogue with these friends via a built-in live chat app, said Ben Jones, director of technology for AKQA in Europe. Another feature allows users to hook their mobile devices up to a Web browser for larger-screen viewing, in which case a phone would act as a remote control.


The service will come with different levels of access. Some limited content will be offered to users free of charge—these users will have to watch pre-rolls before viewing content—while two other subscription levels allow for more access and fewer ads. Michel Dupont, svp of mobile for MTV North & International, told Adweek that while the platform allows for a "discreet" logo ad to also be served in the upper right corner of the app display, his main priority in launching the app is current customer satisfaction.

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2012: The year you won’t have to choose between socialising and a night in front of the TV

2012: The year you won’t have to choose between socialising and a night in front of the TV | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Social media has completely revolutionised way we communicate with our friends and total strangers, the way we make purchasing decisions and how we interact with our favourite brands. Now it’s set to revolutionise the way we watch television.

 

Here we take a look at the big social media trend we think will be the one to watch (if you’ll excuse the pun) in 2012.

 

The recent Social TV Trends Report, a study into viewing habits in the UK, found that 76% of viewers surf the web using multiple devices such as mobile phones, tablets and laptops whilst concurrently watching their favourite TV shows. Sound familiar?

 

This ‘two screen’ way of viewing television means broadcasters are investing in new ways of adding value and enhancing the viewing experience. We recently did some work with the Channel 5’s The Gadget Show where it became apparent that enabling viewers to enjoy and interact with TV shows via a second screen is increasingly important for production companies.

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Flingo raises $7M to bring social TV to every network

Flingo raises $7M to bring social TV to every network | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it
One of the largest TV app publishers you've never heard of, Flingo, announced today that it has raised an additional $7 million from August Capital, which will help the company bring its Social TV...
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ConnecTV social companion beta launches for iPad, PC and Mac

ConnecTV social companion beta launches for iPad, PC and Mac | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

The old guard's attempt at a social TV companion just got real with the launch of ConnecTV in open beta for iPad, PC and Mac -- smartphones and Android tablet versions are coming soon. The idea is you'll load up this app while watching TV and find a whole new way to discover details of your favorite content while at the same time share with your friends. The app uses a mic to detect what you're watching just like IntoNow and links up with both Facebook or Twitter (it'll also work on its own).

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Innovative New Social TV Platform TV Dinner Makes Social TV Fast and Fun: Delivers a Refreshingly Unique Real Time Experience

Innovative New Social TV Platform TV Dinner Makes Social TV Fast and Fun: Delivers a Refreshingly Unique Real Time Experience | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

Following a four hundred thousand dollar seed round in 2011, co-founders John Swords, Adam Broitman, and Edward Babbage have launched a semi-private beta version of a groundbreaking Social TV application called TV Dinner. The first version of TV Dinner is an iPad application, but the company will bring its exciting new product to all devices in the near future. John and Adam met as co-founders of awarding winning creative shop, Circ.us, and recruited Eddie Babbage, former CEO of an electronic music company Resonant Vibes.

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Putting the ‘smart’ into Smart TV | Videonet

Putting the ‘smart’ into Smart TV | Videonet | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it

It is pretty clear where the major Connected TV vendors are heading this year, adding value to their platforms by integrating companion screen experiences (initially focused on tablet/phone remote control and programme guides) and by making multimedia content sharing around the home easier. Both of these will provide a value-add for consumers beyond the provision of on-demand or even increasing volumes of live TV through the apps. The expansion of tablet ranges means there will be more focus on multi-screen delivery of video content as well, with Sony likely to lead the way there thanks to its Video Unlimited content offer.

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Viggle mobile app grants credit for watching TV

Viggle mobile app grants credit for watching TV | SocialTVNews | Scoop.it
Want to earn stuff by watching TV? A free app for that is set to debut Wednesday.

When you tap the screen, Viggle’s software for iPhones and iPads listens to what’s on, recognizes what you’re watching and gives you credit at roughly two points per minute. It even works for shows you’ve saved on a digital video recorder.

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