Go back 10 to 15 years ago, the online experienced was optimized completely for the desktop. Starting around five years ago, it shifted toward mobile devices. The questions is, what is the next platform shift going to be? Seems like it'll be the connected-TV.
So far, devices like Apple TV and Roku have been used to offer a better way to watch content, but the truth is they have a lot more potential. As we've seen with messaging apps like Facebook Messenger, it's easily to build out these types of platforms through integrations. Want to call an Uber? It seems likely that, one day, you'll be able to do it directly from your Apple TV.
The device took a step in that direction on Monday, as StubHub unveiled what it is calling the "the first ticketing app for Apple TV." StubHub is generally known for its secondary ticket market, though it has begun to expand to primary tickets as well.
With this launch, StubHub didn't simply import its mobile app onto the connected-TV, and pretend as if they'd be used the same way. The company completely redesigned the app, and optimized it for the new device. It also tested it multiple times with users to get their feedback.
That's why the Apple TV app has features like side-scroll interface, which allows for browsing within a seating section of a specific event, as well high-resolution seat maps on the listing cards. The new app is less about searching, since it's being optimized for people who don't know what they want to do yet; instead, it focuses more on giving users easy navigation and better images.
“We know that most people will be interacting with our app from their couch, as they’re looking for something to do, so we kept the StubHub app for Apple TV focused on browsability and discovery, to better motivate people to get up and get out,” Marcus Shelksohn, director of mobile product at StubHub, said in a statement.
“The StubHub design team wanted to create a more custom interface to reflect the emotional nature of event discovery – and the result is an engaging look and feel that maximizes event imagery and seat maps, and is highly intuitive to navigate.”
Over the next few years, StubHub believes that mobile will account for more than half of digital tickets purchased, and it wants to be prepared to be on the forefront of that shift.
The integration Apple TV is just the latest such more for StubHub, which was bought by eBay for $310 million back in 2007. The company has been making big expansion moves all year.
That has included going after the primary ticket market for the first time, through a partnership with the Philadelphia 76ers.
The platform includes features such as white-labeling for primary tickets; real-time market data, so that box offices can maximize pricing, while owning and controlling all buyer data; as well as the the ability for customers to purchase tickets from multiple sellers in one transaction, and for partners to bundle other goods, such as parking, with a ticket sale.
That facilitated the need for better tools, designed help manage larger ticket quanities, so eBay bought Ticket Utils.
In May, StubHub became the first company to sell advertisements on its NBA jerseys, through its partnership with th 76ers.
The company also expanded geographically, through eBay's purchase of international ticket marketplace Ticketbis, which had been operating in 47 markets.