Digital Transformation

Watchup leverages two screens in innovative partnership with Nintendo Wii U

By Adam Flomenbaum | Co-Executive Editor

September 3, 2015 | 4 min read

Earlier this week, Watchup, which was named one of Google’s Best Apps of 2014, became available via the Nintendo eShop on the Nintendo Wii U.

Watchup, designed to reinvent the way that people consume video news content, boasts more than 100 local broadcast partners across more than 70 top markets.

While the Nintendo Wii U audience tends to skew younger compared to other gaming consoles, “philosophically, the partnership was a natural fit because Watchup’s core mission is to bring the consumption of broadcast news into the modern digital age,” Watchup CEO and Founder Adriano Farano told Found Remote. “Younger audiences, particularly the cord-cutting set, are demanding that their news is personalized and available to them when they want, where they want it. This is exactly what Watchup provides.”

Nintendo likely reached out to Watchup last year as a potential partner partly because they believed the company would be able to develop an engaging second screen experience for the unique Wii U GamePad controller, which features an integrated touchscreen.

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“The ability to leverage a second screen led Watchup to come up with the idea of a “watch and read” interface that takes advantage of both screens in a fully functional way,” Farano told us. “As it turns out, the Wii U platform is probably the best realization of the “second screen” experience because it doesn’t require downloading a second app on your phone or using a separate device. Because it’s the same integrated hardware, it is completely synchronized and seamless. News articles related to the video being watched are automatically populated on the handheld device and can be browsed for added context with the swipe of a finger.”

Outside of local broadcast partners, Watchup has recently partnered with Bloomberg News, Fusion, Financial Times, The Verge, Vox, and AJ+. A seamless, simultaneous video-reading experience is something that is certainly intriguing to Watchup’s partners, and the Wii U deal is a perfect way to test its feasibility for other platforms.

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