Motorola SocialTV wants to know what you’re watching

It’s no secret that the development of mobile and portable Internet technology has made watching television a far less passive experience for many Americans than it was in years past. Instead of plonking on the couch and maybe doing a little channel surfing during commercials, many people are now watching TV with a notebook, tablet, or phone in hand, multitasking or chatting with their friends via social networks about whatever they might be watching. (Or, in the case of very special musical episodes of prime-time medical drama, perhaps mocking would be a better description.)

Motorola SocialTV

The problem with this setup, of course, is that the notebook, tablet, or phone in a TV viewer’s hands doesn’t have any direct knowledge of what’s actually on the television—and to marketers, this is a huge missed opportunity. So Motorola has launched SocialTV, which leverages Motorola’s Medios application layer to tie the two together. With SocialTV, users will be able to tweet with their friends in real time about what their watching—because their devices will already know what they’re watching and will be able to pull all the necessary bits together. SocialTV will be able to pull in social media feeds about the current television content, as well as provide companion content, whether that be games, special offers, live chat, or (of course) targeted advertising.

The idea is to make the “companion screen” on a TV watcher’s secondary device provide a more personalized entertainment experience…and that should translate to greater customer loyalty and satisfaction.

“In addition to streamlining and enhancing the subscriber’s interaction with their social network,” Motorola writes, “the SocialTV Companion Service offers a social loyalty program that lets subscribers ear virtual currency by checking into shows, taking related quizzes, and posting their opinion about the shows they are watching. Providers have the ability to set the level of achievement, loyalty status, and the rewards subscribers can earn.”

Motorola touts SocialTV as device-agnostic technology that should work with any Internet-capable tablet, smartphone, or computer with an HTML5-capable browser.

SocialTV is plainly engineered as a technology to increase subscriber engagement with television shows and generate “social media buzz” for programming—all of which boosts ad revenue. The real question is whether television watchers—a notoriously fickle bunch—will be content to take quizzes, earn “virtual currency,” and basically function as free promotional tools for shows. Motorola also does not address he potential bugaboo with what Motorola and providers are doing with all the data they accumulate about users’ viewing habits. Mark Zuckerberg may believe privacy isn’t a social norm, but many consumers seem to disagree.


The best free-to-play games you can play right now

Believe it or not, free-to-play games have evolved into engaging, enjoyable experiences. Here are a few of our favorites that you can play right now, including Warframe and the perennially-popular League of Legends.
Movies & TV

The best movies on Amazon Prime right now (November 2018)

Prime Video provides subscribers with access to a host of fantastic films, but sorting through the catalog can be an undertaking. Luckily, we've done the work for you. Here are the best movies on Amazon Prime Video right now.

These 30 useful apps are absolutely essential for Mac lovers

There are literally hundreds of thousands of great software programs compatible with MacOS, but which should you download? Look no further than our list of the best Mac apps you can find for the latest MacOS and how they can help out your…

We tried all the latest and greatest smartphones to find the best of 2018

Smartphones are perhaps the most important and personal piece of tech on the planet. That’s why it’s important to pick the best phone for your individual needs. Here are the best smartphones you can buy.

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.

Installing fonts in Windows 10 is quick and easy -- just follow these steps

Want to know how to install fonts in Windows 10? Here's our guide on two easy ways to get the job done, no matter how many you want to add to your existing catalog, plus instructions for deleting fonts in the process.

After a month of bugs, the Windows 10 October 2018 Update is finally here

After more thoroughly investigating and resolving all bugs and related issues, Microsoft is announcing the Windows 10 October 2018 is again rolling out to consumers starting today, November 13. 

Changing file associations in Windows 10 is quick and easy with these steps

Learning how to change file associations can make editing certain file types much quicker than manually selecting your preferred application every time you open them. Just follow these short steps and you'll be on your way in no time.
Emerging Tech

New simulation shows how Elon Musk’s internet satellite network might work

Elon Musk has the dream of building a network for conveying internet traffic via thousands of satellites. A new simulation created by a computer scientist looks at how feasible the idea is.

A dead pixel doesn't mean a dead display. Here's how to repair it

Dead pixel got you down? We don't blame you. Check out our guide on how to fix a dead pixel and save yourself that costly screen replacement, or an unwanted trip to your local repair shop.

Great PC speakers don't need to break the bank. These are our favorites

Not sure which PC speakers work best with your computer? Here are the best computer speakers on the market, whether you're working with a tight budget or looking to rattle your workstation with top-of-the-line audio components.

Printing to PDF in Windows is easy, no matter which method you use

Microsoft's latest operating system makes it easier than ever to print to PDF in Windows, but there are alternative methods for doing so, even if you want to forgo Adobe Acrobat. Here's how.

These are the 5 best free antivirus apps to protect your MacBook

Malware protection is more important than ever, even if you eschew Windows in favor of Apple's desktop platform. Thankfully, protecting your machine is as easy as picking from the best free antivirus apps for Mac suites.

These laptop bags will keep your notebook secure wherever you go

Choosing the right laptop bag is no easy feat -- after all, no one likes to second-guess themselves. Here are some of the best laptop bags on the market, from backpacks to sleeves, so you can get it right the first time around.