SyncScreen and Civolution partner to power Gory Games Play-along App for CBBC

written by: Richard Kastelein

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civolutionlogoSyncScreen, innovators in the creation and delivery of harmonised two-screen TV experiences, has partnered with Civolution, the leading provider of technology and solutions for identifying, managing and monetizing media content, to deploy its Automatic Content Recognition (ACR) technology, SyncNow, at the core of the company's proprietary synchronisation engine, the SyncScreen™ Framework for the first ever play-along quiz app for CBBC's (the BBC's dedicated children channel) Gory Games.

"We wanted to create the optimal playalong experience for Gory Games, using all our editorial know-how and design insight to produce a fun,  immersive and sympathetic two-screen TV experience for children " said Marc Goodchild, Creative Director of SyncScreen. "We feel that we have achieved that. Crucially, from a creative and production process perspective, our SyncScreen Framework made the synchronisation functions easy to implement and we have used Civolution's SyncNow watermarking solution as the underlying enabling tech for frame-accurate cue detection to maximum effect".

"We are delighted to be working with SyncScreen to deliver this great synchronized app. We are confident that such projects will help create stronger relationships with younger audiences, who as 'digital natives' will naturally want to play along with a well-designed app that's fun and easy to follow." said Andy Nobbs, CMO, Civolution. "Synchronization between multiple screens is becoming increasingly prevalent in mainstream TV programming. The launch of the Gory Games app is further proof that a well designed and produced two-screen experience can unlock deeper viewer engagement models."

Designed to be used with the ever-popular Horrible Histories spin-off quiz show Gory Games, the app for iOS and Android tablets and smartphones lets children take on the studio contestants, test their knowledge of gruesome facts and win virtual prizes whilst watching the show live, or on-demand on BBC iPlayer.

The app design and user experience was produced by SyncScreen and is the second SyncNow ACR enabled play-along app for a CBBC show that is powered by the SyncScreen™ Framework API.  However,  the Gory Games app is the first fully produced by the SyncScreen creative team, creatively optimising the power of the underlying technology in the SyncScreen™ Framework to produce a best-in-class play-along app in this emerging entertainment space.

The first app powered by the SyncScreen™ Framework, also using Civolution's SyncNow ACR technology, was for the CBBC series Ludus and involved synchronising more traditional app mini-games to the studio game show. The attendant play-along app was designed by Cube Interactive using the SyncScreen™ API and was launched in January 2014.

Civolution's SyncNow audio-watermarking technology SyncNow enables real-time identification and frame-accurate synchronization between broadcast, on-demand or recorded television content and the interactive app designed by SyncScreen to present compelling synchronized interactive user experiences. 



About the Author

Richard Kastelein
Founder of The Hackfest, publisher of TV App Market and global expert on Media & TV innovation, Kastelein is an award winning publisher and futurist. He has guest lectured at MIT Media Lab, University of Cologne, sat on media convergence panel at 2nd EU Digital Assembly in Brussels, and worked with broadcasters such as the BBC, NPO, RTL (DE and NL), Eurosport, NBCU, C4, ITV, Seven Network and others on media convergence strategy - Social TV, OTT, DLNA and 2nd Screen etc.

He is a Fellow of the UK Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and UK Royal Television Society (RTS) member.

Kastelein has spoken (& speaking) on the future of media & TV in Amsterdam, Belfast, Berlin, Brussels, Brighton, Copenhagen, Cannes, Cologne, Curacao, Frankfurt, Hollywood, Hilversum, Geneva, Groningen (TEDx), Kuala Lumpur, London, Las Vegas, Leipzig, Madrid, Melbourne, NYC, Rio, Sheffield, San Francisco, San Jose, Sydney, Tallinn, Vienna, Zurich...

He's been on advisory boards of TEDx Istanbul, SMWF UK, Apps World, and judged & AIB awards, Social TV Awards Hollywood, TV Connect & IPTV Awards.

A versatilist & autodidact, his leadership ability, divergent and synthetic thinking skills evolved from sailing the world 24000 miles+ offshore in his 20′s on sailboats under 12m.

He spent 10 years in the Caribbean media & boating industry as a professional sailor before returning to Europe, to Holland.

A Creative Technologist and Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Metis) his career began in the Canadian Native Press and is now a columnist for The Association for International Broadcasting and writes for Wired, The Guardian & Virgin. His writings have been translated into Polish, German and French. 

One of Kastelein's TV formats was optioned by Sony Pictures Television in 2012. 

Currently involved in a number of startups including publishing TV App Market online, The Hackfest and Tripsearch TV. As CSO for Worldticketshop he helped build a $100m company.

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