Select TiVo customers will now have access to more than 70 streaming on-demand video applications from the likes of Showtime and TMZ courtesy of a new deal with Flingo, a leading publisher of apps for Smart TVs.
TiVO has integrated Flingo's LaunchPad video platform into the latest versions of its new set-top box, Premiere. The apps on that platform include everything from recaps of Showtime TV shows like "Homeland" to new videos from Funny or Die to recipe demonstrations form Saveur.
"People are demanding access to online streaming content from the comfort of their own living room, and TiVo's offerings has evolved to support that demand," Tara Maitra, SVP and general manager of content & media sales at TiVo, said in a statement Thursday announcing the deal. "Flingo's platform and wide range of apps makes it possible for TiVo to offer even more choices to our viewers, and we're excited to work with Flingo."
TiVo will use LaunchPad to replace its own platform called TivoCast. Flingo's dozens of apps will be available to the roughly three million customers with the new Premiere box, but not for customers who get TiVo through their regular cable company. Anyone with the box can access the web video from the main TiVO menu.
"TiVo is still one of the most successful standalone set-top box companies," Flingo CEO Ashwin Navin told TheWrap. "They've turned the corner in terms of being able to coexist with cable companies and we were brought in to revamp their web video platform. Anyone with web video can now publish an app to TiVo very quickly and monetize it."
While Flingo marks itself as a publisher of apps for Smart TVs, it also makes them available for set-top boxes like TiVo and Roku. Flingo's apps now span about 20 million households, as it has partnered with almost every major Smart TV manufacturer and the set-top box crowd.
Though Navin co-founded his company as a believer in the Smart TV revolution, he acknowledged it has yet to materialize.
"The Smart TV moment has been a big disappointment because Smart TV sits in a separate bucket from traditional TV. That's a mistake," Navin said. "Smart interface is one that identifies content and brings relevant content from the web into your viewing experience without leaving traditional TV."