Think back to the time you watched television: were you using a smartphone or tablet at the same time? Today, watching television and using digital devices go hand-in-hand, with a variety of free or inexpensive applications that allow television viewers to get in on the action via their social networks and with apps designed to enhance the TV viewing experience, according to Digital Trends. These “second screen” apps make it easier for people to use mobile devices to discuss in real time the television shows they’re currently watching, such as those featured by provider DirecTV, as well as gain insight into behind-the-scenes features of the shows. There are even some apps, such as Shazam, that interact with television advertisement to give viewers special deals or offers as they watch.
Zeebox — Get the Free App
One popular mobile app for television is Zeebox, which allows a viewer to interact with social network contacts while watching television. The app also allows the viewer easily to access background information on the characters and gain information about the history of the show. One network adapter of the app, Bravo, lets Bravo viewers interact with the shows themselves, such as voting in polls during the late-night program.
Fox Broadcasting — Fox Now
Like Bravo, Fox Broadcasting is in on the app action, as well, making it easier for television viewers to sync mobile devices and watch programming while on the go, according to TechCrunch. In addition to Fox Now, which allows users to watch favorite television shows anytime and anywhere, Fox is also using apps such as ConnecTV and Viggle to allow viewers to access information about behind-the-scenes gossip and engage in interactive content. While Fox Broadcasting isn’t the only company cashing in on people’s desire to discuss television programming with friends, they’re one network leading the way in providing free applications to make it easier.
Mobile applications also make it easier for viewers to make certain they catch favorite shows, as well as discover new ones they might be interested in. One of the most popular apps is the free TV Guide Mobile app, which features listings and news. Another application is i.TV, which is also free and gives TiVo or Roku owners the ability to set alerts and even download content from iTunes and schedule programming with Netflix. Die-hard television fans can use TV Show Tracker, available for $1.99, to identify favorite programs and keep track of when they’re on and what’s going on in current and future episodes. Fans who miss an episode can quickly find when the program will be aired again or read about the show before the next episode.
Streaming Websites — Netflix and Hulu
Apps related to streaming sites such as Netflix and Hulu can also be used to view television programming on a mobile device. Although the apps are advertised as free, viewers must have a Netflix or Hulu account to access the programming. These are just a few applications that ensure viewers can always stay up-to-date with their favorite programming using mobile technology. What is your favorite television-related application? Let us know in the comments. Photo by Flickr user Daniel Go