If you didn't get a chance to join us in Santa Monica on Wednesday, you missed a great program of 300+ industry players interacting in panels throughout the day.
The keynote was presented by Bill Baxter, CTO of BuddyTV. The topic of his presentation was when Second Screen would second screen be a mass market experience. His conclusion was that is was already; however, during the discussion, he gave some great insight to BuddyTV's experience around social engagement (about 0.5% of users actually comment in the app via chat or Twitter, but 50% of them read the comments and Tweets). Additionally, he postulated that when consumers used his app to control the 1st device (Simple), they were twice as likely to engage in other parts of the app (Social, Stimulating, etc).
The initial panel consisted of 45 minutes of passionate discussions around what creates an engaging consumer experience with input from BuddyTV, M-GO, Fanhattan, 1K and TVplus (moderated by myself). There was an excellent debate around the concept of a "killer feature" that would propel second screen forward across the chasm to mass adoption.
It was followed by a 40-minute panel on metadata, with participation from Automated Insights, Digital Smiths, RCDb, Rovi and TVplus (moderated by myself again). Ajay Shah from TVplus started the conversation off by explaining how his team currently builds their synchronized experiences and the metadata experts discussed the potential evolution of metadata services to support the developing second screen market--including the concept of metadata becoming "sexy".
We had a very interesting "app shoot-out" just before lunch. The concept was for each app to have 3 minutes to show off their capabilities in Simple, Social, Seamless, Stimulating and Discovery across a Modern Family episode and the recent airing of The Voice. The audience then voted on Twitter and on write-in ballots for the best app in each category and best overall. The winners which were presented at the end of the day were awarded as follows: Simple - BuddyTV, Social - Yap.tv, Seamless - Fanhattan, Stimulating - TVplus, Discovery - BuddyTV, and Best Overall to Fanhattan. Congratulations all.
In the afternoon, we had some great data insight presented by NPD on how the CE device market was shaping up to support second screen, followed by a great panel on the subject with Verizon, LG, Samsung and Testronics (moderated by Tom Engdahl).
That was followed by a great panel discussion from Fox, Disney, Technicolor, Civolution, Blu-Focus and Jargon around collaboration in building great second screen applications, with a very lively debate around the requirement to "templatize" / build a platform vs. the need to support creativity and a great UX.
Renaud Fuchs from Technicolor then delivered a very interesting data set on the second screen app market to date, with views on what market phase we were in (multiplication or consolidation) and presented some compelling data on Get Glue usage.
Finally, the day was capped off with a panel on Monetizing the Second Screen with inputs from Second Screen Networks, GetThis, MediaLink and McCann Worldgroup (moderated by Seth Shapiro). While not conclusive, there was a good debate that continued from previous panels about commerce and advertising (and loyalty programs) balanced with a great user experience.
A great inaugural event for this fast-paced market segment with the most asked question during the cocktail reception being "When and where should the industry gather next?"