Social TV app Zeebox has finally launched in the US after months of preparation, and has revealed that it is doing so in partnership with three of the nation’s biggest media entities: Comcast Cable, NBCUniversal and HBO.
The British company behind the app is believed to have secured strategic investments from Comcast and NBCUniversal for its US launch, while HBO is providing customised experiences around its TV shows.
Zeebox is available on iOS and Android devices, and on PCs and Macs. It provides users with a more social, interactive experience when watching live TV by combining a powerful “Zeetags” engine which generates clickable tags based on names, subjects and products mentioned during a TV show, live chat with friends, an overview of social media activity around the programme, and access to additional information.
Founded by former EMI executive Ernesto Schmitt and former BBC iPlayer CTO Anthony Rose in 2011, the startup has already received strategic investments from UK broadcaster BSkyB and met with considerable success in its home market, racking up 1mn downloads already (although no figures are available for actual usage).
Since then, it has also partnered with Australian free-to-air broadcaster Network Ten to bring the innovative app to Aussie audiences through the formation of a joint venture between the two companies, along with a “substantial investment” by Network Ten.
According to Techcrunch, NBCUniversal is planning to adapt 300 of its shows to take make use of Zeebox technology, including top-rated entertainment show ‘The Voice’ as well as American football games featuring university team Notre Dame (known as the “Fighting Irish”).
The Zeebox app can be downloaded here.