We’re seeing extraordinary growth in the amount of entertainment content available to us with the click of a button or tap on screen. Take TV, for example. Last year, nearly 200 scripted, first-run series ran on cable; more than double the roughly 90 series in 2009. In addition, we now have a thriving original programming outlet — streaming services (“over the top”) — that didn’t even exist five years ago. Netflix alone will offer more than 20 original series in 2015.
Commenting on this explosive growth in TV programming, John Landgraf, CEO of FX, made the following point at a television industry event earlier this year:
With so much new content, consumers are more dependent than ever for key tastemakers and curators and reviewers and bloggers to guide them to the shows that are worth their limited attention.
Of course, there’s more than just TV competing for our attention. In 2014, there were 707 new feature films released in North America, roughly 800,000 books published (about half of which were self-published), 75,000 new albums released, 30,000 new podcasts launched and an estimated 350,000 new apps published.*
And, that’s just the new content. Bear with me while we consider the entire content libraries for these same categories. IMDB puts the total number of feature-length movies in its database at just over 300,000. RottenTomatoes shows 126,000 DVD/Streaming movies rated in its database — still a massive number. IMDB has data on just over 2 million TV episodes from 90,000 TV series, while Amazon returns 15,000 TV results under its Instant Video streaming product and carries DVDs for roughly 2,000 TV series. There are approximately 14.8 million total books (English language on Amazon), 43.0 million total songs (iTunes, Spotify has 30 million), 300,000 total podcasts (according to Digiday) and 1.4 million total apps available in the Apple App Store (Google Play is estimated to have at least as many).**
This is all to say that while our entertainment options are nearly limitless, our available leisure time is not. And, because we’re all discerning entertainment consumers, we need help sifting through the flood of movies, music, TV shows (as suggested by Mr. Landgraf), books, podcasts and apps coming at us. The current analog or digital tools we rely on to be our entertainment guides can be inefficient, unreliable or both. A clear need exists for a product designed specifically for quick and easy access to trusted recommendations. And that product is Tastebud.
Tastebud is a new iPhone app designed for the sole purpose of helping people share and discover movies, music, books, TV shows, podcasts and apps. Users can ask friends for specific recommendations or simply share their current entertainment obsessions.
Tastebud will be available in the Apple App Store within the next few weeks. In the meantime, you can find out more about the app here. And, you can follow Tastebud on Twitter and Instagram @thetastebudapp and Facebook at facebook.com/thetastebudapp.
* MPAA Theatrical Market Statistics 2014,’ Bowker, Forbes, Billboard ‘Business Matters,’ Apple
** JustGeek/IMDB, Amazon, Apple, Digiday