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What is a Second Screen App?

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A Second Screen App allows you to interact with TV shows, movies, music, or video games through a tablet.

This Second Screen’ allows you to access extra information on a portable device synchronized with the content being viewed on your television screen.

For example, my friend lent me The Amazing Spider-Man Blu Ray last week and I could download the Second Screen App for my tablet. This allowed me to use the tablet as a control panel to manage the movie (pause, rewind, skip scenes) as well as view all of the behind the scenes content, interviews and other extra features. However, there are loads of other Second Screen Apps.

Second Screen App Examples:
• Rating information and publicity
• TV programs broadcast live tweets and comment
• Synchronization of audiovisual content via web advertising
• Applications that extend the content information
• Shows that add on their websites, content devoted exclusively to the second screen
• Applications that synchronize the content being viewed to the portable device
• Video game console playing with extra data, such as a map or strategy data

It’s early days for Second Screen Applications at the moment, but we expect them to become common features for many movies and popular TV programs.

Rather than texting or calling to vote on shows like X Factor and Strictly Come Dancing, voting could be done through a Second Screen App. (Although revealing the true cost of a vote could have a negative impact on viewer participation.)

Video game strategy guides could become a thing of the past if Second Screen Apps are available to download. Simply play through the game while having the app synchronised next to you. If you ever get stuck, just consult the Second Screen App to help you. That’ll save you having to surf the web to find the solution to a particular puzzle or difficult level.

How Do Second Screen Apps Benefit Internet Marketers?
If you do the internet marketing for television, movies or video games, Second Screen Apps are a creative opportunity to offer viewers engaging content and keep them coming back for more.

The applications vary tremendously depending on product. But a little creativity can open up all sorts of opportunities. Obviously, make it easy for customers to find your Second Screen Apps online and via their mobile and tablet devices

If you don’t offer Second Screen Apps with your product or simply can’t, because you’re an online retailer, then there are a growing number of advertising opportunities to reach your target audience who may be tuned in to particular TV programmes.

However, that’s not to say that you can’t think outside of the box!

What about a Second Screen App that works when you’re walking around the super market, helping you to find which isle the Thai Green Sauce is hidden down or what the best offers are in that particular store?

Okay, it wouldn’t technically be ‘second screen’ but it could work in a similar way, by providing you with helpful information for a better shopping experience while you’re in a particular store.

So while it’s early days for Second Screen Apps, the possibilities are limitless with a little bit of imagination.


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