Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
8/20/2012 6:24 AM
Verizon has launched a new app that makes video discovery on mobile a piece of cake. Viewdini is a new piece of software available for iOS and Android that searches a vast array of networks, such as Verizon FiOS, Netflix, HBO, ABC, CBS, NBC, Crackle, Hulu Plus and many more. With so many programming options now available, making sense of mobile TV is one of Verizon’s new missions.
The app is easy to use. Just begin by typing in some keywords, and the software will search all the providers and look though thousands of shows to find results. Viewdini does feature specific highlighted programming and specific shows, and offers detailed information on rotating shows. There is also an option to browse through various genres to see what is playing. Once you zero in on the content you want, the app will let you know if the programming is available for rent, via subscription, purchase or for free.
One of the key points covered with this solution is that network carriers are focused now on not just providing content but also making it easy for customers to discover content that is relevant to them. With so many mobile TV apps and solutions, and with phone carriers offering a diverse mix of programming, actually sorting, searching and finding content has been increasingly problematic. Verizon is focused on making this process as simple as possible and offers the free app to help make sense of the vast array of programming available.
However, here lies the biggest problem facing not only network providers, but also initiatives such as Dyle branding and devices that allow content from many different providers: How do you keep track? While the Viewdini app is certainly handy and provides a great service when it comes to corralling in a large database of info, the real fact of the matter is that content is growing exponentially and keeping track of all of it for consumers remains a very big challenge. It will be interesting to see how the current fragmentation is managed from different providers as well as carriers, customers could suffer frustrations from having too much choice, and in the end could end up watching not nearly as much as they potentially could. This is the same problem that digital cable and satellite has suffered from. As channel amount surges through the hundreds and more than 1000, subscribers sometimes face too much choice, and it's easy to get overwhelmed. Future solutions for mobile will need to get pretty smart about what the likes and dislikes are for end usesr, guiding them into directions that will be most accepted, as opposed to dropping them in a search list of hundreds of not very relevant results. But there is time, and as mobile TV grows, so will the means to get to the programming that matters most.
While no unified mobile guide has broken out of the pack so far, expect the network providers such as Verizon to focus on making the task of deciding what to watch on a mobile device a little bit easier with app solutions such as Viewdini.