San Francisco, Calif.-based startup Bazaar Labs just released an Android application for its Miso social TV service. The release will bring all the same functionality that is already available to iPhone, iPad and web users in a native app available today on Android Market.
Miso is one of a group of services that use game mechanics to entice users to “check in” and share what they’re watching on TV and on the web. Like location-based services Foursquare and Gowalla, these services offer up badges and other virtual goods in exchange for those check-ins.
The release of the Miso Android app comes just a week after Bazaar Labs updated its iPad and iPhone mobile apps to give users more tools for social sharing. The Android app carries over all the same functionality, enabling users to check in, comment on and “like” check-ins from anyone else using the app, notify them when their check-ins have been commented on, and let users designate “favorite” shows which they can “quick check-in” to.
The social TV space is becoming increasingly crowded, with startups like Philo and GetGlue releasing apps that offer the same types of check-in functionality and virtual rewards. Large distributors and programmers are also getting into the game, with Comcast releasing a social app called Tunerfish. CBS is tying its efforts to its TV.com property with a social TV app of its own.
With so many choices, it will be difficult for Miso or any other social TV app to differentiate itself and take the lead in an incredibly fragmented market. So far, most apps have tried to boost their visibility through partnerships with TV programmers that tie rewards to user check-ins during TV broadcasts. Miso has taken this a step further by making videos and other multimedia goodies available to users as virtual rewards for checking in, but it’s unclear whether this approach will hold up against competition from players like CBS.
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