Watching TV certainly isn’t what it used to be. Now, viewers want to multitask more than ever using a second screen, such as a tablet, smartphone or computer. Smart TV app company Flingo is looking to combine all of those goodies into one interactive TV platform, known as Samba.
Samba allows viewers to synchronize live TV viewing with just about any screen, whether it’s the TV, a phone, a tablet or a PC. No apps or log-ins are needed; instead, it’s embedded right into the TV.
So while you’re flipping channels on a Samba-capable set, the system will automatically recommend relevant TV programming, online videos and even social media discussions. Other interactive features could include check-ins, tweets, polls, cast and crew info, special offers, and much more.
The system uses something called Automatic Content Recognition (ACR). Flingo’s core technology is in algorithmic content detection, which identifies hundreds of channels of live television content that are being analyzed in Flingo data centers across North America. So instead of leveraging ACR from the microphones from second-screen devices, it is built directly into the TV, making it faster and more user-friendly than other platforms. It also means that you can have that second-screen experience with or without your trusty portable.
Both Hisense and Haier have just announced plans to integrate Samba into new smart TVs.
“Samba provides Haier sophisticated software technology and an integrated second screen experience,” said Aywin Zhou, general manager of platform and services at Haier. “Our customers are seeking a powerful television experience whether they’re watching live sports, primetime television or blockbuster movies. With Samba, Haier customers have everything from recommendations, what’s trending on social media, and information about the show and cast at their fingertips on the TV and on the second screen.”
If you’re planning to be in Vegas next week, Flingo will be showing off Samba at the 2013 International CES.
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Over the past 15 years, Rachel Cericola has covered entertainment, web and technology trends. Check her out at www.rachelcericola.com.