Technology

CTAM: TV Apps Get Syncing Feeling

Five networks will compete in Tuesday showdown 10/15/2012 10:20:00 AM Eastern

Five cable networks with their pulse on second-screen TV
viewers will square off in the "Sync to TV Competition" at the CTAM Summit Tuesday starting at 9 a.m.

The head-to-head competition will pit recent apps from A+E
Networks, Discovery Communications, Showtime Networks, NBCUniversal's Syfy and
Turner Broadcasting System's TNT. Each
contestant will present the app's content strategy, consumer interaction data
and key takeaways.

The winner will be selected by session attendees, who will
score the apps on functionality, user experience, creativity, scalability,
business impact and consumer engagement. Here are descriptions of the
contenders:

A&E
Storage Wars: Fan
Challenge

The co-viewing app for the reality series, which features a
team of professional auction hunters in California, has gaming components
including the ability to participate in bidding auctions, as well as other
synchronized digital content such as show trivia, quizzes, poll questions and
cast information.

Storage Wars
viewers were able to earn points while they watched the show while competing
against other app users. The "Fan Challenge" experience was available for iPad,
iPhone, Android handsets and on the AETV.com website. According to A+E, users
averaged 23 minutes and 48 seconds of engagement per week with a 21% content
click-through rate and an average of 2.3 content shares per user.

Discovery Channel
‘Shark Week' Plus for iPad

The audio-synced companion viewing experience was created
for Discovery's "Shark Week 2012," the 25th anniversary of the programming
franchise. The app, powered by second-screen startup TVplus, provided viewers
with content complementing five Shark Week premieres plus exclusive photos,
behind-the-scenes information, trivia, interactive infographics, "Shark Week
Bingo" and more.

Shark Week Plus users averaged 28 minutes and 17 seconds of
engagement time per episode, with click-through rates of 57.5% for content,
65.5% for polls and quizzes, and 23.5% for ads.

Showtime

Showtime Sync

The premium programmer's app provides exclusive content to
viewers on their iPads while they watch Showtime on-air. The app automatically
listens to determine if the viewer is watching an enhanced episode, then
presents synchronized special features, trivia, polls, predictions and other
features. Showtime Sync works on live, prerecorded, on-demand, online streaming
or DVD video, as long as the sound is
audible to the iPad. Viewers can also use the app to browse through existing
bonus content any time.

Syfy
Syfy Sync

Available for iPad and Android tablets, the Syfy Sync app
uses audio-content recognition technology to sync with on-air programming. The
app launched in August 2012, timed to the season three premiere of Face Off, a reality competition show
featuring prosthetic makeup artists. Exclusive additional content includes
photos, video, behind-the-scenes access, polls, interaction with the show's
host, judges and contestants, and direct links to social media sites.

Syfy Digital worked with Face
Off
's producers and talent to create extended versions of judges' critiques,
detailed photography of the contestants' work and high-resolution versions of
contestant sketches. Additionally, the social feeds provided in the app let the
show's host and judges to interact directly with fans via Twitter in real time
during the broadcast.

TNT
'Falling Skies' App

The co-viewing app for the sci-fi series lets fans become
part of the 2nd Mass defense, a regiment of humans fighting the alien hordes in
Falling Skies. Key features of the
app, launched in June 2012, include "takeovers" - which literally take over the
viewer's smartphone or tablet with content relating to what's on TV - as well
as polls, trivia, behind-the-scenes tidbits, exclusive digital content and
social TV integration.

The app, available for tablets and iOS and Android
smartphones, works whether the viewer is watching a live broadcast, DVR
recording or VOD. The Falling Skies app was
built in-house through a joint partnership between TNT,
Turner Studios and the AMPT Technology Group.

March