What is Zeebox?
Zeebox is a social networking application that allows people to interact with each other while viewing their favorite TV programs. It's available for both Apple and Android devices, as well as for PC's. This application is being used for "second screen" TV viewing, an activity that is becoming increasingly popular.
What is Second Screen TV?
Second screen TV is a term referring to a TV audience interacting with each other on their phones, tablets, or computers while they watch a TV show. Through social applications such as Facebook or Twitter, TV viewers can exchange real-time reactions to the shows they are watching on the “second screen” of their electronic devices. They can also see additional TV footage available only on the Web, or gather additional information concerning the show they are watching. This trend of second screening has been gaining popularity. A Viacom study found that 56% of respondents used social apps on their tablets or smartphones to interact with friends while viewing their favorite TV programs. This is a huge audience to tap into. In 2011, social TV was targeted by David Rowan of Wired magazine to be one of the biggest future trends to follow, and from the looks of things, he was correct.
Zeebox Enters the Arena
Zeebox is well positioned to take advantage of this trend. The application already had 1.5 users in the U.K. when it partnered with Comcast, the largest cable provider in the U.S. This gave a huge boost to the launch of Zeebox in the U.S.. Although there have been many applications available, each offers a fragmented piece of the social TV viewing experience. Zeebox brings it all together in one application. It combines a guide of TV shows, allows you to schedule your TV viewing with your friends, talk via social applications to your friends, see what programs are trending and what shows are recommended for you. With Zeebox, you're able to receive all kinds of extra information about the shows you are watching, such as interviews with the actors, biographical data, outtakes and other fun stuff.
The stations that are fully integrated into the application include NBC Universal and HBO. In fact, “The Voice” offers new interactive content for the Zeebox application,including additional information and trivia about the songs being sung. Polling is going to be added in the future. Both NBC and HBO pledge to continue to add features for this app, and I'm sure many other networks will jump on the bandwagon. Why? Because for a long time, advertisers have been trying to get the TV audience to watch real-time TV. Much advertising revenue has been lost by the use of DVRs. By promoting an application like Zeebox, audiences can be lured back to real-time TV, and revenue from ads can be increased. A big advantage for advertisers is the capability of offering ads on the second screen targeted specifically for the viewer.
The Zeebox application is available at the Zeebox site for Iphone, Ipad, Android and Web. My guess is that it will increase the popularity of second screen TV viewing. Although I've never engaged in social TV watching, I think I'll download Zeebox on my Droid smartphone to see what all of the fuss is about!
What Do You Think?
Do you think that applications like Zeebox will increase second screen TV viewing?
- HBO, NBC Universal and Comcast add Zeebox TV app – USATODAY.com
New TV app Zeebox aims to capture viewers with one-stop second screen experience.
- Zeebox: The App For The TV Obsessed - Forbes
Is it me, or have people gotten insanely obsessive about TV shows in the last couple of years? It's a cargo cult. Dozens of bloggers spend their nights and mornings 're-capping' their shows moment by moment, every twist, turn and continuity break. Wh
- Social TV Apps are Changing How We Watch Television | Social Media Today
Viacom released a study a few months ago on social television usage that I’ve been meaning to write about, because I think it represents a critical behavioral change in TV viewing that will impact many a brand’s marketing decision.
© 2012 Margaret Perrottet