Miso knows what you’re watching, no check-in required

Social TV app Miso just got a lot smarter. The application, which lets users check in and share what they’re watching on various social networks, will now be able to detect what they’re watching — provided that they are subscribers of DirecTV. (s DTV)

The latest version of the Miso app will now automatically recognize the programming that viewers are watching in DirecTV households. Once open, the Miso app will seek out set-top boxes connected to the user’s WiFi network and sync with them, eliminating the need for users to search for the show they’re watching. While DirecTV is the first to integrate with Miso, it won’t be the only operator to do so: CEO Somrat Niyogi said in a phone interview that the DirecTV deal is nonexclusive and that there would be other pay-TV providers enabling the same sort of functionality soon.

The deal fulfills Niyogi’s promise to “go beyond the check-in,” which is something that the app maker has been working toward for some time. While some other apps stop once someone logs in to a show, sometimes providing users with virtual rewards or exclusive multimedia content for doing so, Miso hopes to engage viewers beyond that.

Taking out the step of actually checking in to a show will free up users to interact with second-screen content and other viewers with one less step in between, which fundamentally changes the value proposition for the app. It also gives Miso a big advantage over a lot of other social TV apps, like GetGlue, Tunerfish or even audio fingerprinting app IntoNow, by eliminating the biggest hurdle users face in interacting with the second screen.

Now that a major operator is on board and more are on their way, the startup is going to work on opening up its platform for programmers to create unique second-screen experiences through the Miso app. That could include things like introducing polls during shows or offering behind-the-scenes content as a companion to what’s happening on-screen. And, of course, now that Miso is aware of what viewers are watching — whether it be live TV, VOD content or even prerecorded shows from a DVR — it can potentially sync up and serve companion advertising to what’s appearing on-screen.