Crawling through your cable guide looking for something to watch is a chore–all those redundant east/west and HD/SD feeds, all the programing you don’t care about. Even if TV stations produced content you could get into, you may not ever notice it as you rocket past on your way to ESPN. Boxfish wants to change all that, and recently raised $7 million to develop a system that will re-prioritize your guide based on their social media traffic. Their original product was mostly a second-screen experience, but the new product will concentrate on the main screen.
“The biggest use case for our technology is to be on the first screen,” said Boxfish CEO Eoin Dowling …. Not only is the direct integration with TVs and set-top boxes a lot more user-friendly, it also makes a lot more sense from a business perspective. Second screen companies have faltered by the dozen in recent months, but Boxfish early on focused on building out an API, and the company has been able to win consumer electronics manufacturers, TV service operators and others as customers. “We survived long enough to monetize it,” said Dowling.
Boxfish’s technology is already being used by over 100 vendors, including some integration in Samsung smart televisions. One of the biggest uses of this smarter technology may come in the form of monetizing the DVR by serving up a custom selection of ads to people on their recorded programs, based on what they watch and their social media activity. In a world where people have less time to find TV they might like, some might find this an advantage; others, an intrusion. Thankfully you’re going to need to provide your box with your social media accounts for this to be effective.