Monday, November 21, 2011

My Review of IntoNow as a SecondScreen Experience

If you haven't tried IntoNow on your iPad, you should.  It does a decent job of some of the things people are expecting from #SecondScreen experiences, though I do believe it will leave you wanting for a deeper, richer experience.

- Simple.  While it doesn't allow you to control the 1st screen at all, it does quickly identify the show you are watching thru its audio finger printing technology called SoundPrint (it does have trouble if someone is talking in the background).  It did a decent job with live broadcast, news and sports.  It also did a decent job with DVR'd material, even to the point of determining which episode of a syndicated series you were watching (an improvement over 6 months ago).

- Social.  IntoNow does a decent job of integrating relevant Tweets about the show you are watching.  It also allows you to quickly see what your friends are watching (assuming they have also registered and are using IntoNow).

- Seamless.  It has some very basic integration with iTunes, launching your iPad directly to the link to rent/buy the show (which is not a useful use cases since you are in theory already watching it...but could be useful if you are perusing your friend's viewing history).

- Stimulating.  It has some rudimentary integration with IMDB to give the viewer some additional details about the show's actors, etc.  When you are watching the news, it has related stories and related current Twitter trends about the topic--both of which are useful.  It does not currently integrate Wikipedia or the official website of the TV show, though I am sure that is an obvious next step.  

- Discovery.  While there is actually a "discovery" button, I haven't found anything it has turned up very useful.  In theory, Discovery should be recommending content to me based on trends, my preferences, and hopefully some variable giving it the opportunity to "surprise me" (vs. telling me I might like what other people are watching).  But so far, the app isn't doing much for me for recommendations or discovery.

It's also available on the Android, but there is not a laptop experience.

My overall summary (as of Nov 2011--I am expecting them to make improvements):

- Simple.  None (though simple to use).
- Social.  Medium.
- Seamless.  Low.
- Stimulating.  Low.
- Discovery.  None/Low.

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