ABC’s ‘My Generation’ iPad App Follows Episodes in Real Time

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So there’s a new documentary-type show starting on ABC next week called "My Generation" that, according to the show page, "follows a disparate group of high school seniors from Austin, TX" in 2000 "and then revisits them in 2010." Good, great, grand. The show also has its own iPad app.

This app, called My Generation Sync, follows the episodes along in real time and delivers little factoids and trivia questions at certain points throughout the show. That’s cool, but what’s even more amazing is that it can do the exact same thing even if you’re not watching the show when it airs.

If you’ve recorded the show to your DVR, the app uses something called "Media-Sync technology," which "can even tell when you fast forward or rewind for a seamless experience." The technology was developed by Nielson, the ratings group.

Surely they’re spying on you!

Actually, it’s a bit simpler than that. Apparently "the app relies on being able to ‘hear’ your TV to remain synched with the show." It detects and matches up with certain audible frequencies to determine how far along into the episode you happen to be. It apparently takes 10-15 seconds for the initial synchronization to kick into gear.

Aside from factoids and trivia, you can imagine the advertising implications of something like this. "Like that girl’s dress? Click here to buy it right now!" This could take impulse buying to a whole new level.

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