Matcha.tv offers users an advanced way to discover new videos to watch. The application combines two elements: the user’s social circle and their existing video subscriptions. The user begins by linking their video subscription services, such as Hulu, Netflix, Facebook, Amazon, YouTube and Comcast. Next the user adds their friends. Matcha creates a social grid and combines that with the video preferences discovered through the user’s video subscriptions. The application generates a list of recommended movies and television programs that suit the user’s preferences. Users can sort through available online viewing opportunities more quickly by seeing which Matcha recommends for them. The user can see options that they can view based on their list of video subscription services.
Matcha.tv was founded by Paul Petrick, Ilan Ben Zeev and Guy Piekarz in August of 2010. The application was intended to fill a growing need in the area of online video viewing. Many subscription services currently house thousands of videos, which can make it time consuming to pick something the user will enjoy. The application has added a number of features, including the new and cool list and a watch later queue that synchronizes with the Netflix instant queue.
The video recommendation concept is used by a number of applications. Some package it with additional services. For users who watch videos frequently, it comes in quite handy. Matcha seems to take this idea to an extreme that may not be appealing for everyone. The application seems to take over for users who are not capable of choosing something new to watch on their own. Although some users may enjoy a new suggestion every now and again, the application seems to take video recommendations to the extreme.
Matcha is relatively user friendly. The application displays movies and television shows with thumbnail cover images. The user interface is clean and clutter-free, framed by hints of blue and the charming green Matcha logo. That being said, the user interface seems to be overkill for casual video watchers. Users who do not watch frequently may have no desire to log into a third party account and navigate the various features or search tool bar. That being said, users who do enjoy online viewing often will appreciate the appealing design and lack of navigation roadblocks.
New users can get started with Matcha.tv by clicking one of the two blue buttons positioned along the right hand side of the homepage. The top button is for Facebook users and the bottom button is for Twitter users. Those who do not have a social networking account (or do not wish to link one) can click the link below the buttons that reads “I don’t have Facebook or Twitter.” Doing so takes the user to the registration form, which appears along the right side of the following page. The form asks for a first and last name, email address and password. After submitting the form, the user is asked to choose their video services to access their new account.
Matcha.tv invites all users to create an account for free. There are no subscription fees or other charges for doing so. This is definitely a good thing because it would be difficult to justify charging a fee for a service like the one offered by Matcha. Some of the video subscription services supported by Matcha may require a fee or service subscription to use. This is based entirely on the service (Matcha does not add any extra charges for recommendations).
Matcha.tv is aimed at anyone who watches videos online very frequently. Anyone who doesn’t view often may feel that the application is overkill. Those that do can appreciate the convenience of obtaining movie and television show recommendations tailored to their preferences and subscription services. Users can explore new programs and films and discover new favorites. The friend element makes Matcha more appealing for those that maintain a Twitter or Facebook account.