is an augmented social hub that overlays on your TV screen as you watch w/ friends! Talk and chat with friends as you watch TV without obstructive interfaces. Viewdash interfaces with existing Android TV applications to add actionable modals to the hub, allowing you shop for items from your favorite shows as you watch!

➣ Category: Chat/Social


Inspired by social networks, Xbox One console menus, the Dominos app for tracking deliveries and mobile applications that allow for deeper native workflows that feel natural to users, we pondered what the potential of a TV application for the future would look like. Would it allow you shop as you watch?

Would it be an embedded system, within existing applications? Allowing you more functionality with less interface resistance? When we began to formulate my specifications for such an application, We settled on the concept of Viewdash - the social TV hub of the future.

viewdash infographic #1

Made for viewers and advertisers alike, Viewdash provides consumers with a path of deeper interaction with their TV beyond the normal 'sit and look' paradigm most modern Smart TVs have adapted. Viewers can now search queries while watching, say for instance to understand what a character is saying, and host "channels" where they can invite their friends to watch with them without giving away sensitive information like their password. If there's one thing we know about the future of computing/protocols for Television, it's that voice is one of the major contenders for it.

Talking with your friends while you watch natively from the TV is one of the strongest communication qualities of Viewdash, and the potential for a embedded search engine in the social hub for advertisers opens up a whole new possibly to the future of watching television.

What it does

Viewdash is an Android TV application that overlays on top of existing, Android TV applications. It features a native search engine that connects to gateways like Google Search API and Amazon Product API, and allows viewers to talk with their friends through WebRTC-hosted parties as they watch TV.

How we built it

We used the Android TV library to construction most of the application. Other technologies were used to connect to the web to allow viewers to query search while inside of the Viewdash social hub, and watching their application of choice as well as starting new viewparties. This utilizes transparent activities from the base input service, which allows us to display the modals from Viewdash regardless of which is application is playing on the androidTV input source.

We used AndroidTV lib, Google Search API, Amazon Product Search API, WebRTC and a tiny Node.js server

viewdash infographic #3

This allows us to offer the application as a overlay for other applications and still communicate with the web to offer the social aspect of the proposed Viewdash platform.

While the application is still in the alpha stage and state with lots of bugs, we hope to improve and tweak this over the next year and add natural-language processing for more intuitive search + a lot of other features. The demo we have provided will be the foundation for us.

Potential for market

There are multiple opportunities for Viewdash in the market as a Android TV application and possibly on other clients like Roku or Samsung Tizen as well. Many consumers have already began to adapt new platforms like Discord and FaceTime to communicate with each other.

SZN believes we can push forward this voice/video/search preference to TV through androidTV + varying technologies through Viewdash.

What's next for ViewDash

We want to refine and iterate on what we already have for Viewdash.

viewdash infographic #4

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