Bonnier, the publisher of magazines like Saveur and Popular Science, and Flingo, the largest publisher of apps for Smart TVs, have partnered to create a series of apps extending Bonnier's titles onto Internet-enabled TV sets and set-tops boxes like the Roku.
Together, they will release a new app for each magazine, offering videos, images and archival content for fans. Saveur has a couple of web series, including “The Test Kitchen” which helps home chefs learn how to peel garlic or dice an onion. Those videos, currently on Saveur's website YouTube channel, will resurface in the apps, which will be distributed for free in app markets thanks to advertising and sponsors.
Though smart TVs remain a small segment of the TV market, Bonnier believes it is an ideal platform for leading media companies to extend their brand.
“This is about going after new technologies and being at the forefront,” Sean Holzman, Bonnier’s Chief Brand Development Officer, told TheWrap. “We don’t look closely at what other publishing companies may be doing. Flingo has a universe of 15 million devices and that should double in 2013.”
The emphasis will be on video since research demonstrates that it remains the top activity, even more than gaming.
Ashwin Navin, CEO of Flingo, said that while many media companies are putting secondary titles on Internet-enabled TVs, Bonnier is using its top titles.
“Major media companies aren’t putting their crown jewels on smart TVs,” Navin told TheWrap. He added that when they measure how long users spend online with certain brands, websites register just a few minutes.
"You see 10 times that in a TV app. People are more captive and less ADD."