Media

Dijit acquires GoMiso in bid to create social TV

NOTE: GrowthBeat -- VentureBeat's provocative new marketing-tech event -- is next week! We've gathered the best and brightest to explore the data, apps, and science of successful marketing. Get the full scoop here, and grab your tickets while they last.

Dijit Media is delving further into the “social TV” market, acquiring GoMiso to go along with its NextGuide “hyper-personalized” user interface app for the iPad.

The deal gives Dijit more options to improve social TV, which is all about using your iPad and other connected devices to enjoy your TV watching with others. Dijit will continue to support GoMiso’s Miso and Sideshow products, but it plans to shut down GoMiso’s Quips app and service. Social TV hopes to tackle the problem of having hundreds of viewing choices and nobody to watch a show with. With so many cable, satellite or internet video channels to watch, it’s harder than ever to find what you want, especially with the antiquated screen guides that were designed in the age when you had less than 100 channels.

“Miso was the first to define the burgeoning social TV space and became a major contributor to where the industry is today,” said Jeremy Toeman, the chief executive of Digit Media. “We’ve built the most powerful TV guide and discovery platform for consumers and the TV industry alike, and this acquisition will give us more tools to give our users a guide experience that redefines how people discover content.”

Diji already offers a guide to both live television and streaming TV. It presents a single view of different services you can tap — Netflix, HuluPlus, or iTunes. But it takes this a step further by offering interest-based personalized channels based on the tastes that you have identified in your Facebook profile and “likes.”

Many screen guides offer ways to search for shows or actors, but using a remote control for that purpose is time-consuming. NextGuide is all about finding content for you that you might not realize you want to watch. The guide fetches movie art to form a mosaic of tiles that you can tap on the iPad’s touchscreen. Beyond categories such as “comedy” or “drama,” it also suggests categories based on your preferences, such as”football,” “San Francisco,” “Lady Gaga,” or “Charlie Sheen.” To see what is available in that category, you tap on the tile. It’s like your own sherpa for TV.

The guide’s purpose is to answer the question “What should I watch next?” It lets you find shows on the TV or on an iPad. It has search capability but can also deliver alerts to you. The app also starts recordings on the home DVRs of DirecTV customers.

Rival services include Fanhattan, an app that helps you find videos on a variety of sources. Dijit has 10 employees, while GoMiso’s sole employee is founder Somrat Niyogi, who will join Dijit as an advisor.

“We began the journey of inventing Social TV over three years ago, and think Dijit’s the right home for our users and the platforms we’ve built,” said Niyogi.  “There’s a lot we’ve learned about consumers and the ever-changing nature of TV, and believe that the NextGuide platform is poised for huge growth ahead.”