iDubba–Making Sense of the Idiot Box

The idiot box (a.k.a. TV) is an essential part of our lives and except for the content delivery, no significant innovation has happened with the dubba.

iDubba, a NCR based startup is a social platform that brings social element to TV shows, i.e. let users discover shows based on their profile and taste, and enabling them to make their TV viewing life more social!

Once you sign up, the service will ask you questions related to your taste/age/preference and feature the shows accordingly. The service focuses on TV shows/movies and not so much on Channels, a well thought out strategy for content discovery. is nicely integrated with Facebook.idubba

iDubba Features

  • Focus on Shows/Movies rather than Channel.
  • Complete integration with Facebook with easy to control notifications settings.
  • Program suggestions based  on who you are and which shows/movies are popular, 2 days in advance.
  • Intelligent alerts: Set your favorite Areas of Interest in Profile and get recommended shows for specific genre of shows to save time!
  • “Tune in” to your favorite shows and update your TV viewing status to share with your Facebook friends.
  • Add anything with a (+) sign to your “MyDubba” for easy viewing of shows and movies and for better recommendations.
  • Search shows/movies based on their Schedule, Popularity, Genre and Channel via easy to use filters.
  • Rate TV shows, Set reminders, Tune-in to shows, Comment and Write Reviews. Share everything with your Facebook friends!

The service keeps a tab on its recommendations and you can fine tune the same by removing the irrelevant recommended items and help the engine understand you better.

How is this different from EPGs?

Think of it this way- When web started the data was not huge and simple directory search was enough to serve people who were looking for some information, but when it expanded people needed something like Google! EPG’s only work as a directory, it’s not interactive, intuitive or intelligent enough to give real time suggestions. That’s exactly where iDubba comes handy. Today we have more than 10k shows changing every month in more than 10 languages and over 500 different Channels. India has it’s unique problem to solve when it comes to watching TV and that’s where we want to pitch in with a solution [Rabi Gupta, Founder of iDubba].

iDubba’s core philosophy is to bring social element to TV viewing and the company had its first taste of success when they created customized alert feature for IPL, enabling users to get alerts for specific matches.  Each TV show/program has a good amount of detail (actor/director) and popularity meter as well.

What iDubba needs to look at is also to capture the buzz/chatter around TV serials. If you look at the recent buzz around Bigg Boss 4 (thanks to Pamela Anderson), there is enough data to mine and present it to the users. But since iDubba relies solely on its users data, there hardly is any activity seen on their Bigg Boss4 page.

And that also brings me to 1 basic question for iDubba – who is the customer and what problem areas are you solving for them? Is iDubba (trying to be) the digital platform for TV shows (and be their preferred digital partner, especially for new launches etc)? If yes, will a pure social media analytics be more useful? It’s important for the team to think about this as users are all over the web – Twitter, Facebook, Blogs talking about their favorite TV shows and if iDubba wants to gain complete authority in this space, meta game is what they should play (apart from consumer centric recommendation/alert service).

As far as the product is concerned, the design is neatly done, but the team needs to really look at call to actions across all the pages. The icons are not at all intuitive (like Watch Meter) and moreover, I am not sure why a logged-in user needs a FB account to comment – yes, it throws the message in your FB stream, but there are only a few things you should expect from your users.

Do give iDubba a spin and share your comments/feedback.

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