We've been trying out the Samsung ES8000 SMART TV's Social TV capabilities the last couple of weeks - literally from Barack to Bieber. Like most families, we multi-task when we watch TV, with a remote in one hand and a phone/tablet/laptop in the other. The last several weeks have given us several life-altering "live" events that have kept us - along with millions of viewers - tuned into our televisions and our Twitter accounts like never before.
With the Samsung SMART TV, we simultaneously followed our friends' social media updates while watching Hurricane Sandy coverage, the American Music Awards, and the single most tweeted event in history, the 2012 Presidential Election.
Like hundreds of apps that you can download to the Samsung TV, the Social TV app has made it convenient to connect to Twitter, Facebook and Google Talk. Since we DVR (time-shift) almost everything we watch using our Tivo Premiere, live events are really the best way to connect with our friends - and to get all their tweets and Facebook posts overlaid onto the TV is pretty cool.
How it Works
The remote that comes with the TV helps choose three different overlay options and you can choose how the TV content is displayed relative to the social media on the screen. The older model of our 55” TV came with a QWERTY keyboard which made it easier to respond, but not as practical.
The Social TV app automatically updates the total number of posts by placing a number next to each corresponding feed, or by an alert that will appear in the bottom right of the screen. You switch the screen view to hide the updates, and a number will pop up at the bottom right every so often showing you how many status updates have been updated so you can click and switch to show them if you'd like. If you consider that the night of the election there were 31 million tweets, and at one point 327,452 tweets per minute when the election was called, that’s a lot of reading and scrolling on your TV.
I have a feeling we'll be watching some holiday classics this way - perhaps starting with A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Special tonight. :-)
A huge thank you to Samsung for providing the television for us to try out, and for sponsoring my blog these two months as part of their #FamiliesInMotion initiative.