Samsung Electronics America, a provider of consumer electronics, has kicked off its Free the TV Challenge to find the most innovative applications for IPTVs, Blu-ray players and Blu-ray Home Theater Systems. With a total prize value of half a million dollars, the Challenge is open to all developers in the US.
Samsung also announced that the number of applications available through Samsung Apps, its HDTV-based application store, has more than doubled since its launch five months ago. People can now choose from a wide range of apps across five categories - video, gaming, social media, sports and kids - including apps from ESPN and Hulu which are currently exclusive to Samsung. They can also download and enjoy 3D video on-demand app to view trailers of 3D movies.
"We are thrilled that content owners continue to embrace Samsung Apps and that we have doubled the number of applications available to owners of Samsung 2010 connected TVs and Blu-ray devices," said Eric Anderson, vice president of content and product solutions, Samsung Electronics America, Inc. "The Free the TV Challenge will continue that momentum by opening up these TVs to even more developers across the US who want to distribute their content on the biggest screen in the home. People want a connected entertainment experience with their devices and we encourage developers to free the TV by bringing new concepts, as well as existing apps from many platforms, to the TV."
Samsung Free the TV Challenge
With the Free the TV Challenge, Samsung is unlocking a new era in smart TV by helping free the TV for developers, who can now tap into the expanding market for TV applications. Developers can go to www.FreeTheTVChallenge.com to register for the contest. To be eligible, developers must live in the United States, submit the final app and provide a video that showcases how the app works to Samsung by November 11, 2010. The contest will be administered by New York-based startup ChallengePost, and entries will be judged based on the quality of the idea, functional implementation, and visual appeal. Total prize value is US$500,000. Roelof Botha from Sequoia, Mike Maples from Floodgate, Bob Borchers from Opus Capital and Jeremy Levine from Bessemer will serve as judges. Consumers will also have an opportunity to cast their vote online for the "People's Choice Award." Samsung will announce the overall winner at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, NV.
In addition, select applications submitted to the Free the TV Challenge will be made available to the community of Samsung Apps users. Samsung Apps is accessible on all 2010 Samsung Blu-ray players, Blu-ray Home Theater Systems and the majority of HDTVs with screen sizes 40" or larger.
To further support developers, Samsung is launching a series of Free the TV Developer Days, where developers will get hands-on demonstrations of the Samsung Apps platform and a tutorial on the Samsung SDK, as well as participate in a Q&A session with Samsung engineers. The first session will be held on August 31, 2010 at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose, CA, and Pandora Founder Tim Westergren will speak at the event.
More information on Samsung's Developer Days and registration for the Free the TV Challenge is available at www.FreeTheTVChallenge.com.
New Apps For Content and Services
Samsung continues to see growth in smart TV and has more than doubled the number of available applications in its library within five months. In addition to various free apps, Samsung has expanded its library of apps with the addition of ESPN's Next Level application, as well as a variety of other apps that offer 3D, sports, casual gaming, weather and family-oriented content.
The new ESPN Next Level app is available as a free download exclusively through Samsung Apps. With four main sections, the app will allow fans to access in-depth looks at sports events and players in the news; predictive picks of the day's games across all major sports; research nuggets from the ESPN Research team; and insights from Peter Keating, Senior Writer at ESPN The Magazine, who gives his perspective on a variety of statistical subjects. Samsung and ESPN plan to introduce a ScoreCenter app in the Fall of 2010, based on the popular app currently available on mobile devices.
Samsung will soon launch a 3D Video On-Demand app which offers viewers sneak previews of upcoming 3D movies. All apps are now available and can be downloaded directly on the TV via their Internet-connected HDTV, Blu-ray player or Blu-ray Home Theater System.
For more information about Samsung Apps, please visit, http://www.samsung.com/newsroom.