Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Sling TV…while the options are plenty, it can be difficult to nail down exactly which streaming service offers a viewer’s favorite shows.
StreamSavvy has a simple mission – make that process easier.
Just over a year ago, Chris Kessler and his wife cut the cable cord.
“Finding the shows that we want when we wanted was still painful,” Kessler says.
That’s when the inner strategy consultant came out.
“I thought if there’s pain, there’s opportunity,” Kessler says.
He banded together with fellow Co-Founders Carl Lewis, Sam Siman, Chirag Masekar and Zach Blevins and, “We set out on this mission, let’s make streaming easier,” Kessler says. “That was our why.”
A continually fragmenting marketplace and potentially enormous customer base mean StreamSavvy is tackling a problem that could be an industry changer.
Kessler cites a Pew Research study that found one in four of the 123 million households in the U.S. get their entertainment outside of cable.
“That’s a really big number and it’s growing everyday,” he says.
The ever-expanding sea of streaming apps is giving customers a fear of missing out.
“The reality is I have no idea what’s on,” Kessler says.
Open this app, find a show is on another, or maybe a new season was released on a different app. Add in cable networks dropping their own streaming channels and Twitter’s recent sports programming deals, and the average consumer can’t keep up.
“What we have really focused in on is being that TV Guide of the future,” Kessler says.
StreamSavvy presents its MVP that creates a customized, curated guide of a viewer’s favorite shows. The app breaks the process down into two parts: discovery and access.
House of Cards fan? Maybe a customer has a secret love of The Bachelorette.
“You can type in your five favorite shows and we’ll tell you what streaming applications you need to watch them,” Kessler says.
StreamSavvy helps customers answer the tough questions like ‘Netflix or Hulu?’
A list of those chosen shows will appear on a customer’s guide where they can click on it and be taken directly to its home on a streaming site. StreamSavvy doesn’t actually stream the program, but instead is an application that sits in front of that service and makes it easier for a customer to interact and find their shows.
As customers add log-in credentials over time, StreamSavvy creates a centralized dashboard for all a viewer’s subscribed services making management of all those applications easier.
While StreamSavvy is currently testing its product with a web application that searches TV shows, more platforms and a more robust search function are in the works.
“We’re building a platform that’s mirrored on your phone; it’s on your laptop; it’s on your iPad; it’s on your big screen,” Kessler says.
StreamSavvy is finding many customers are accessing shows on their phones, so a mobile rollout is planned next, hopefully but this fall, then it’s on to the TV platform.
Users can currently only search show names, but StreamSavvy’s search function will be built to handle queries like actor names or topics. The system will also eventually attempt to recommend shows based on viewer habits.
StreamSavvy is getting some help from accelerator The Brandery in Cincinnati. After about a half year of work, and some positive feedback from an alpha test, Kessler and company decided it was time to take a real shot at building a company around the service.
The group thought about angel investing but were a little early in the game for such dollars. Kessler says the angel community in Columbus didn’t have the most experience in the entertainment industry either.
With families rooted in Columbus, The Brandery provided Kessler and Lewis, the two full-timers, an opportunity to stay in-state, and have access to a network with contacts in the entertainment industry. The Brandery has connections with The E.W. Scripps Company, one of the largest media conglomerates in the area.
Excitement from the accelerator and an early connection with the E.W. Scripps Company, “That was immediate validation,” Kessler says.
StreamSavvy is continuing that validation and looking for tip of the spear customers that are ready to give feedback along the way. However, after releasing its MVP just a few weeks ago, Kessler says signups are already exceeding expectations.
StreamSavvy’s own expectations for what the company could mean to media are high.
“We want to build a win for Columbus, definitely Ohio, but specifically Columbus,” Kessler says.
For more information, visit streamsavvy.tv.