i.tv – Stay N Alive

Never Lose Your Remote Again With i.TV’s Remote Control Framework

click remote i.tvWhen the iPhone was first released, one of the strongest draws that convinced me towards purchasing an iPhone was a cool little app that enabled me to control iTunes, straight from my iPhone. The “Remote” app, provided by Apple, essentially took one more remote out of my hands and all my music, whether on the iPhone or off, was right there, in my hands wherever I went.  Today i.TV has taken that concept and with the help of the new iPhone 3.0 firmware, applied it towards their strength, TV and Movies.  Today they announced a new remote control framework, allowing TV and device manufacturers to allow individuals to control their home entertainment devices from the iPhone, straight over WiFi, bluetooth, or the iPhone’s own built-in connector.

Your Own Universal Remote in Your Pocket

As devices like GPS get ready to make their way onto the iPhone, the iPhone is quickly becoming a single, all-in-one device users can take anywhere, and simply plug in to the situation they are taking part in.  i.TV has realized this and applied it to the TV watching experience.  Today, they announced when the software is released in the app store, that it will launch immediately with a built-in TiVo remote control.  You simply register your TiVo, and for any show you want to control, you’ll no longer be searching for the remote.  Just pull out your iPhone and play, pause, fastforward, rewind, and even schedule recordings, straight from the comfort of the same device you take phone calls from.

i.TV has built an entire framework around this concept, and is hoping other device manufacturers will also embrace it.  I, for one am hoping for a Windows Media Center plugin I can simply control my home media center experience from.  Maybe an Xbox controller that I can control my TV watching remotely?

iTunes Integration and New Design and Layout

In addition to the Remote Control framework, i.TV has completely redesigned their application to a much smoother, and faster application flow.  The buttons are now easier to push, it is much easier to control your watching and viewing experience, schedule shows, add to your Netflix queue, or just see what’s on at your local Movie theater (and preview the movie before you see it!).  In addition to that, they have finally integrated iTunes into the experience, allowing you to purchase and download relevant iTunes movie and TV shows, and even soundtracks and music straight from the app itself.

With a single app, i.TV has provided you everything you ever needed to know about the movies and TV shows you are watching, also allowing you to control and react to the experience as you’re watching or preparing to watch a show.  I can just see the Movie theaters cringing at all the i.TV users checking their phones as they watch movies now.  No worries though, because you can purchase your tickets, straight from i.TV too!

Push Notifications

Alongside the rest, i.TV is finally releasing Push Notification alerts for upcoming shows.  Now, when your favorite show is about to play, even if you don’t have means to record it, you’ll never miss a show, as your remote, er, iPhone, will notify you when the show is about to happen.   Simply schedule the show, set the alert, and catch each show you never wanted to miss!  Previously this was only available via e-mail.


As a loyal i.TV user there are still a few annoyances that have not yet been embraced.  Knowing the team I am sure they are being worked on.  The number one missing feature I would love to see is despite the “i” in i.TV, i.TV still lacks social network integration.  I can currently send myself reminders via e-mail, or even share with friends via e-mail, but i.TV has seemed to have missed the easiest sharing tool of all, and that is social networks. Facebook has provided simple libraries to integrate Facebook Connect into any application (it takes just minutes to set up), and Twitter integration and sharing also is a fairly simple feature to implement (a matter of simply sending to a simple link in a browser window, no API needed).  I hope these are features we can expect to see soon – I’d like to share the TV shows I’m watching with my real friends, and not have to spam them via e-mail.  Or maybe I could post a review and have it appear on Twitter or Facebook.  These are very simple updates.

In addition, the registration process is still a little too complicated. Currently, to register, you have to type your e-mail address twice, and provide a username. I would suggest one or the other, or even better yet, just integrate Facebook Connect or Twitter OAuth as your registration means and get rid of the registration altogether.  Regardless, once you’re registered, there is little mess or pain beyond that, so perhaps it is only a personal annoyance.

i.TV Keeps Getting Better

Regardless of my own annoyances, i.TV is still the best TV Guide app for the iPhone, hands down.  Every release they continue to blow away the competition and keep getting better at it!  As devices like the TiVo begin to embrace the iPhone as a remote control device using universal frameworks like i.TV’s, I’m sure other manufacturers will want to get out of the stone age and incorporate their own products as well.  My hope is that we’ll see this very soon as i.TV seems far from losing any momentum in this race.  While I don’t have a TiVo (I’m a loyal Windows Media Center user), I’m looking forward to seeing what the future holds, and will continue checking i.TV for reminders and updates to the TV shows I watch, hoping my own device manufacturers also hop on (ahem, Microsoft???).  i.TV continues to be one of the best apps in the app store, and when the 2.0 version is released, you should definitely give it a try – it’s free!

Now, where did I put my remote?


merlin remote


merlin itunes i.tv

What’s On Removed From the iTunes App Store

whats-on.jpgZdnet is reporting that apparently, i.TV‘s competition, What’s On, has been removed from the Apple iTunes App store. Searching for the iPhone App returns a listing, but clicking on the listing returns an error saying the App couldn’t be found. There is no word from What’s On, and it’s unclear the reason for the dead links.

This news of What’s On, having recently pushed their 1.5 version to the iTunes App store, comes on the Heels of the number one Free App in the iTunes App store, i.TV. Both applications provide TV Listings and customizable TV lists for users, i.TV with much more content. i.TV also provides a movie listings and Theater search service which What’s On does not provide.

i.TV is a client of mine, so I have to admit I have a bias, but I’m very curious to know what’s “going” on here. I have no inside knowledge on this one unfortunately. I can only wonder if Apple discovered something that was in disagreement with their Terms of Use policies.

i.TV Hits #1 in 72 Hours

IMG_0001-20081010-121020-1.pngI’m trying to post a few more inspiring posts with the state of the economy and the sad state of the elections currently. I really believe much of the state of the stock market is being caused by negative reactions in the media. Hopefully I can help stop that. I started with my last post and a little perspective. I’d now like to share a little good news.

Today, at the company I work for, i.TV, we’ve announced that we’re now the number one Application in the iTunes App store! It took us only 3 days to get there. With 443 reviews in the short time we launched and almost all of them raving we’re really excited about it! We’re madly at work on our next features now.

As you can read on our blog, we’ve got some very exciting announcements coming soon, so stay tuned there to hear more. You can also read some of our favorite reviews on our blog. In the meantime, check out our Facebook, and Twitter profiles – be sure to follow and add yourself as a fan! Lastly, if you have any fan photos of your favorite shows or parts of the app, go ahead and share those in the “fan photos” section of our Facebook Page.

Here’s a little video of our launch and celebration music – you can buy the song on Shout Out Louds. We think it’s pretty inspirational. Subscribe to our YouTube Channel here.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4WMGZHewoQ&hl=en&fs=1]

Looking for iPhone and Facebook Development and Consulting Shops

With my new work at i.TV (go visit the iTunes Store Home Page if you want to try us out – lower right-hand corner), I have started phasing out my consulting (which used to be my full-time job) and am putting my focus towards building (with a top-notch team and great CEO, of course!) one of the top Entertainment App companies out there. In the process, I am still getting 5-10 people a week contacting me asking if I know anyone that does iPhone or Facebook Development. Quite frankly, finding someone to refer to is not an easy task! That is what I used to do, so it wasn’t something I was looking for (and I know there just aren’t many out there, as well, even with the high demand).

So, if you or someone you know does either iPhone or Facebook development, or work for a company that does, I want to make a deal with you or your company. I’ll send you these referrals for a commission on the deal you make with them. This is a win-win for all – I now have someone to send referrals to. You get the referrals and regular business, and the Clients now have someone they can get help from. Having written books on Facebook, and working for a company that does iPhone App development, along with this blog growing considerably and guest blogging on some of the top blogs on the internet, I get these requests regularly – I’d really like someone to send them to.

If you’re a developer, perhaps you’re starting to see the demand of Facebook and iPhone development. This is an excellent area to have knowledge in, in particular in a down economy. If you’d like to learn I do recommend you look at my book, FBML Essentials, and at the end of this month I’ll be doing a free webinar for O’Reilly in which I’ll cover beginning Facebook development. Stay tuned to this blog and I’ll reveal more details soon.

Know a Facebook or iPhone development company or developer? Shoot me an e-mail (or comment below): jesse at staynalive dot com or call me at (801) 853-8339. Also, if your business is in need of such work, give me a ring and I’ll point you in the right direction!

i.TV Launches Live in the Apple App Store

itv_logo.pngI’m proud to announce that our previously announced Entertainment, TV, and Movies application for the iPhone, i.TV is now available for all to download in the Apple App store. We’re proud to say that we’ve been able to even add in a few social components since we last announced it.

itv_movie_detail.pngOur slogan at i.TV is “Media. My way.” We truly intend to change the way you watch television by truly socializing the experience, making it personalized to the individual. We’re starting that with a personalized TV and Movies guide on your iPhone. From our CEO, Brad Pelo, “i.TV makes it easy to discover television and movie programming options, share entertainment information with friends, and access media anywhere you can take an iPhone or iPod touch.”

With our Guide you can see what’s on, where you are, review the shows you are watching, see what others think of the shows you watch, search for what you want, or even filter by Genre, sort by most popular, and even more. In addition, you can add parental controls, send yourself a reminder by e-mail when a show is on, preview movies right on your iPhone, or share your favorite shows with a friend! Not just that but you can see theaters in your area, and preview the movies at those theaters before you watch them. If you’re a TV or Movie buff like me you’ll really like this app.

I covered this before when we thought we were close to going live, and you can see screenshots there – stay tuned for some even more impressive features to come. Again, I mentioned earlier my position is Chief Community Officer. I’m in charge of building community into our products – stay tuned to the i.TV blog later on today and I’ll share with you some of the efforts we’re starting out with to make it a more social experience.

You can download the App here. Also, you can read more about it on our blog, and Louis Gray and TUAW both have great posts.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h4WMGZHewoQ&hl=en&fs=1]

i.TV Announces TV & Movies App for the iPhone

Today my new employer, i.TV, an up-and-coming startup with headquarters in Palo Alto, announced our first release of the “TV & Movies” App for the iPhone. The TV & Movies App we feel will change the way you watch TV and Movies. We intend to revolutionize entertainment so that you see what you want to see on TV and in the Movies, and that starts with your iPhone.

When you open up the TV & Movies App for the iPhone it starts by asking you your location, and, based on GPS coordinates, it finds your location, and recommends your local TV providers in the area (I’m using Louis Gray’s screenshots for this – he did such a great job on them!). It then downloads listings from your area, right to your iPhone, along with Movie Theater listings around your area.


From the TV listings, you can click through, choose your favorites, rate each TV show, view actors and upcoming episodes, choose star ratings for each, along with post reviews about each show and see what others have shared. You can rate reviews even and share how helpful they were to you.


Beyond just TV listings, we let you look up what movies are playing in your area. We’ll display the theaters closest to you and let you choose from the list and see all movies showing from those theaters at given times. From each movie listing you can do the same things you can do from TV shows – write reviews, rate your favorite movies, and more!


Within each movie or TV show you have the capability to also view pictures from the show, from movies you can watch the preview for the movie right on your iPhone (something that will keep you surfing for quite awhile!). You can also recommend movies and TV shows to your friends via e-mail.

There is an entire section devoted to search. So, for instance, I can type in “football” and see everything playing related to football at a given time. Or I can type in “computers”, or “fishing”, or you name it and find out what’s playing related to that term at the given time. You can also add any show or movie to your favorites (when you give it a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down”, it also adds it to your “My Media” page.


What attracted me to this company is what is coming soon after our launch though. Above each listing is a button that says, “watch”. In the near future you’ll soon be able to save to a Tivo, stream your favorite episodes, and more, all right on your iPhone!

I have been hired onto i.TV as their Chief Community Officer – my responsibilities include Social Product Strategies for the company, and I’m currently working on a social application that I think will blow your socks off if you’re a TV or Movie junkie like myself. Stay tuned to our blog for much more news to come – this is only the beginning of Media, My Way.

We are simply awaiting iTunes to post the App to the iTunes store (we were expecting it to appear today, but due to the iTunes 8 launch it may be in the next day or two). We will update you via our blog and Twitter (we’ll update Twitter first!) when it’s available. You can read the official announcement here: http://mediamyway.wordpress.com/2008/09/10/itv-not-in-app-store-yetcoming-soon/. Check out our video here (YouTube Channel coming soon!): http://i.tv.