Social TV platform Zeebox has announced a partnership with Foxtel, making it the first second-screen app in Australia to include Foxtel channels in its line-up.
Zeebox has achieved 350,000 downloads in the four months since its launch.
From today, the platform will power Foxtel’s Guide app and second-screen experiences on Foxtel channels will be available on Zeebox. Users will also be able to interact with favourite shows and friends, and be able to remote control and remote record shows.
Spot Synch – for advertisers – is also due to launch within weeks. Spot Synch will enable advertisers to synch second-screen experiences with TV ads, in real time.
Zeebox CEO Craig Blair (pictured) told B&T: “We have yet to speak with advertisers, but we think this partnership with Foxtel will generate a great appetite.
“A great proportion of our current users are Foxtel subscribers. We think that, over time, engagement will skew more to Foxtel users.”
Blair said Zeebox is performing stronger than expected, beating its target of 250,000 downloads so far by 100,000. “We are way ahead of the targets we set,” he said. “And we are way ahead of where the US and UK were at this stage. People are also spending longer on Zeebox – an average of 38 minutes per session. We also have more users on iOS than Android, and more women than men are using Zeebox.”
Zeebox’s launch partner was Network Ten. Jon Marquard, chief operating officer at the network, said: “The take-up of Zeebox in this market has been much stronger than expected. We are pleased to welcome Foxtel to the Zeebox family and we are confident that the addition of the Foxtel channels will make Zeebox an even more compelling proposition for every television viewer in Australia.”
Speculating on the future for social TV, Blair added: “It’s still early days – we are only four months old in Australia. We believe that, over time, an open network agnostic approach is a better solution for users than an app with a proprietary channel owner. We will see more broadcast channels using platforms like Zeebox and we will move towards a single industry app approach, as in the US and UK.”
He added that Zeebox Australia is already in discussions with other broadcasters and Foxtel channel partners.