Sometimes, it’s quite the struggle to figure out what to watch on Hulu or Netflix. It almost makes you nostalgic for the days when you could turn on the TV and flip through channels aimlessly. Now, Toronto-based Secret Location has released a free Web and iOS app called DitchTV that serves up YouTube content using a combination of old-school channel surfing and gesture controls.
The human-curated feed offers randomized video, skipping a third of the way into the clip to deliver greater context off the bat. The videos are selected based on a variety of categories, which include Sports, Pop Culture, Comedy, Movies, Travel, and Nature — among several others. The Discover section is less focused, presenting all kinds of different clips to make your viewing experience less predictable.
Navigating the interface is simple and involves basic gestures to keep video coming. Swiping left or right changes videos on the current channel. Swiping up and down flips channels. A two-finger swipe up or down jumps categories, while a two-finger drag left or right scrubs through the video timeline.
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Posted by DitchTV on Wednesday, October 14, 2015
The length of clips also varies considerably, with some as short as a minute or less, while others are more than 10 minutes long. DitchTV doesn’t list or note the duration beyond the timeline at the bottom.
“DitchTV is what we think YouTube would have been, if it had evolved from broadcast TV,” said Ryan Andal, who created the app. “When you land on the site, instead of looking at thumbnails and unhelpful descriptions, you’re directly immersed in the video. We jump right into the meat of the content so you can intuitively decide if want to surf or continue watching, or scrub back to the beginning.”
There is no Android app currently, though one is reportedly coming soon. The iOS app does natively support AirPlay, and the iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch can still function as a remote. There isn’t much more to the app than its basic purpose as a way to discover new content, or to pass the time without bothering to search for anything specific.