Yahoo! has announced the acquisition of IntoNow for an amount believed to be between $20 and $30 million (€13 and €20 million). IntoNow was launched in January 2011, so the acquisition, which is 80% in cash, comes just weeks after the company was founded.
IntoNow has built a platform and companion TV application based on real-time indexing of television. The app, which runs on the iPhone and soon also on iPad and Android, automatically identifies what TV show the user is watching and shares the information on Facebook and Twitter. It uses a Shazam-like method of identification by ‘listening’ to the sounctrack.
To this end, UntoNow has indexed more than five years of US-based television programming. IntoNow is able to identify content down to the airing, episode and time within the programme as well as provide programme information and links associated with it, “all within a matter of seconds.”
The move marks Yahoo’s entry into social media and TV. “Relying on social channels as a means for discovering content, whether it’s on a PC, mobile device, or TV, is rapidly on the rise. IntoNow’s technology combines the ability to check-in to what a consumer is watching, engage in conversations, and find related content,” said Bill Shaughnessy, SVP of global product management at Yahoo!, in a statement. “The IntoNow application the team has built clearly demonstrates the opportunities the technology presents across Yahoo!’s network, especially in regards to our video content, search, mobile and Connected TV experiences. We are excited to have the IntoNow team join Yahoo! as we continue to build out these experiences.”
The application is also integrated with Facebook, Twitter, iTunes and Netflix to enable more sharing and information gathering. “IntoNow has built a unique way for people to engage with each other around the content they enjoy,” said Adam Cahan, CEO of IntoNow. “Companion applications and devices are changing the way we interact with TV in significant ways. The IntoNow team is excited to be joining Yahoo! to help create new consumer experiences and to be part of Yahoo!’s global scale and reach.”