Betaworks-Backed Telecast Brings The TGIF TV Experience To Mobile Internet Video

Posted: May 8, 2013 in Apps, Mobile, Startup, Technology
Tags: , , ,

20130508-204519.jpg When this generation looks back to retell the best and
most amazing past times of the early oughts, surfing
YouTube will undoubtedly be on the list. But as we
shift to a more mobile lifestyle, content discovery —
with particular regards to internet video — is
becoming less and less fluid. That’s why betaworks is today launching Telecast, a
new service that bundles internet video content into
an easily digestible, themed package. Co-founder and hacker-in-residence Matt Hackett
(formerly one of the first employees at Tumblr and
lead engineer there) came up with the idea for
Telecast when he was looking for great video content
on his iPad mini. “Right now, the video consumption
experience on desktop is very different from that on mobile,” he said. “It’s almost impossible to quickly
find high-quality video on your iPad or iPhone.” To solve this problem, Telecast will bundle top-notch
video from all over the internet into a package. This
package consists of one to five videos, each lasting
around five minutes. But each of these videos will
have a common thread. For example, you might open up Telecast to a
package on noted television psychic hotline maven,
Miss Cleo, wherein you’d watch a classic Miss Cleo
ad, a clip of her on the Jerry Jones show, and then a
clip from her confessional documentary on the
falsities of hotlines. The trick here is not just threading together common videos, nor is it finding
the best video on the web. According to the co-founders, the amount of high-
quality video floating around on the internet is growing
by the second, while discovery tools aren’t changing
much at all. The trick, then, is that Telecast actually starts to
learn about you. When you first sign up for the
service, you’re taken through a cute little mini quiz to
determine which channels Telecast should serve up.
As it stands now, there are only around 12 channels
but that will expand quickly as the service grows. Once you’ve completed the quiz, Telecast starts to
pay attention to what you watch to bring you even
better tailored content. “Watching video content is no longer about six shows
in a row on Friday night,” said Matt. “Most of the best
video out there is on the internet now, so we’re trying
to bring a similar experience to mobile video
consumption.” I see Telecast being big with heavy YouTubers as
well as those who only view videos sent directly to
them in email or on social media. Both categories of
human are interested in finding great video easily on
their mobile devices. But to the team, Telecast is
much more targeted at someone who isn’t interested in putting in the work it takes to find great mobile
video, as opposed to the wanderer who can spend
four hours on YouTube. “We’re really focused on delivering the highest quality
video possible,” said Matt. “We’re not an infinite well.” But what about the cash? The team sees a number of opportunities to generate
revenue from Telecast, but the one they’re most
excited about has to do with branded video.
According to Matt, some of the best producers on the
web are brands, but they have awful methods for
driving traffic to the videos that often cost millions of dollars to make. Telecast believes that they can step in and push
users to branded content in a way that feels less like
advertising, and more like watching part of a story
unfold. Telecast is available now in the App Store for users in
the U.S., Canada and Mexico.

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Comments
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