Viacom is no fool when it comes to turning great programming into money making opportunities and the Comedy Central iOS app launched today will bring even more viewers to the channel's multiple hit shows. You'll be able to watch full episodes of your favorite shows for FREE the day after they air, which is great news for lovers of South Park, The Daily Show, The Colbert Report and late-night game show @midnight.
If you pay for TV through participating cable and satellite companies such as HBOGO, you will also get access to 200 total episodes, specials, and shorts, including advance viewing of new and past shows like Tosh.0, Broad City, Futurama, and Chapelle's Show.
So why has this progression to apps taken so long to appear? The answer lies in the traditional relationship between TV Networks, Nielsen and advertisers. If Nielsen can't measure it - then advertisers won't pay for it and the network loses out.
Now Viacom have decided that making more content availability on more devices drives higher total views, while consumer demand for mobile viewing has finally convinced their partners in the satellite and cable companies. The Comedy Central app is just the latest of several Viacom has been rolling out starting with its youngest audience in Nickelodeon and then onto MTV.
Steve Grimes, the senior vice president of Comedy Central's multi-platform programming strategy, told CNet that most Comedy Central's shows reach half their audience some time after the initial airing via DVR.
We know that our fans, our core audience are young guys, young people. They want content on various devices. They don't differentiate between platforms. The app will reach other platforms later this year, including the Web in another month or so.
Shows will stay on the app for about 3 months before they move over to subscription video-on-demand services like Netflix. The app will also deliberately have less ads than the TV version to encourage fans to download it and watch on their mobile device, and it's not overloaded with "second-screen" features to accompany watching on a big screen.
You can download the app via the iTunes store right now.