Never Hit The Info Button On Your Remote Again

By James Mowery

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Remember Shazam, an awesome application that identified music by “listening” to it for a few moments? Well what happens if you take that whole concept but apply it to television instead? You end up with IntoNow, and this one little app could change the way you identify broadcast programming forever.

IntoNow is a just released iOS application — with an iPhone and iPod Touch application already available — that is capable of identifying over 266 years, 2.6 million broadcasts, and 5 years back worth of content. Pretty impressive, wouldn’t you say?

It works the way you would expect: you activate the application, ensure that the television (or other device playing video content) is loud enough so that the application can “hear” it, give it a few moments, and, if IntoNow did its job, have the identity of the broadcast revealed to you. Just like magic.

After you do this, IntoNow gives you basic show info, access to Netflix (with quick access to your Netflix queue), iTunes, and IMDb. There are also some community features: notifications alert the user when comments from friends and other activity take place, which sounds interesting. Then there is also a “Discover” tab, which gives you plenty of options to find new video content to explore.

Speaking of being social, IntoNow has Facebook and Twitter connectivity. You can share with your friends what you are watching right now, and you can even “check in” to television programs, believe it or not. I’m not sure if this feature is going to be a hit, but it is there if you find it useful — just be sure to realize that your social networking friends will know how much of a couch potato you really are.

So how does it manage to accomplish all of this? It uses SoundPrint, which is an audio-recognition technology that can identify content from sound bits. It identifies rhythm patterns from content (commercials too, which can also be fun to attempt to trick IntoNow to getting it wrong). And it seems to work very well from what reviews I have read.

However, as we pointed out, this library of identifiable content only spans back from five years ago, and while that might be fine for episodic television as of late, it becomes a problem for those of you who hold shows from back in the day in high regard — be prepared to accept the fact that these episodes might be unidentifiable. Either way, there is always room for improvement, and maybe the SoundPrint library will grow with time.

In closing, IntoNow seems like a fun application that is worth giving a try. Hitting the info button your remote will never be the same. Best of all: it is free! Check out IntoNow in the Apple App Store.

About James Mowery
James Mowery is a passionate technology journalist, entrepreneur, and Apple enthusiast who has written for various top-tier publications like Mashable, Techi, and CMSWire. Follow him on Twitter: @JMowery.

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