Bangalore-based Althea Systems is announcing a $3 million Series A funding from Intel Capital today. The startup recently launched its social video browser Shufflr this summer, and it has also built a video discovery platform dubbed ShuffleFeed that it plans to open to developers soon.
Shufflr is an Adobe Air-based desktop app that serves up personalized stream of videos on your PC. The company has also been developing applications for smart phones and connected devices, and Althea CEO Vinod Gopinath showed me a beta version of their Android app at NewTeeVee Live last week. Shufflr currently utilizes Air to target these platforms, but Gopinath told me that the company isn’t married to Air and that other platforms will be supported in the future as well.
Gopinath also said Shufflr will eventually be available as a web application. When asked about the viability of such a product in light of YouTube and others rolling out social interfaces like Leanback, he brought up an important point: Smaller publishers like the New York Times want to handle their video assets independently from YouTube, which is why they’re more likely to work with platforms like Shufflr than support third-party advertising with Google. It remains to be seen, however, whether users and device manufacturers will take that leap as well.
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