The advent of on-demand streaming platforms such as Netflix has freed the viewer from the constraints of scheduling, but it has also resulted in a loss of a sense of community that comes from an entire nation watching the series finale of The Sopranos at the same time. Now, Bingee is a smartphone app that wants to enable the social viewing of yesteryear for the digital television era.
Bingee is a second screen experience that enables viewers to connect with friends — or strangers — to binge-watch their favorite TV series in unison and talk about the plot-twists in real-time. To begin, users download the app onto their smartphone or tablet and connect with their friends. Next, when they want to start a marathon viewing session — or just watch one episode — they can create a new bingee session for others to join. Then, they watch the show as usual on their television or laptop and chat with their companions about what is happening on their second screen. Users can schedule a bingee for a future time and invite their friends to join. Alternatively, if they don’t know what to watch, they can browse existing groups and join one of those.
We have already seen Xaxis Sync using the second screen by pushing content from TV commercials into mobile advertising during ad breaks. How else could smartphones be used to enhance viewing experiences rather than distract from them?