Smart Screen

Vast Media Smart Screen Round-Up: NBC, Snapchat and the Olympics; A Big Brother Bot

Here’s a run-down of recent second screen-related entertainment items, via Berlin-based research and consulting company Vast Media.

• For the 2018 Winter Olympics, NBC Universal worked with Snapchat to put together two exclusive shows and other content. Airing every day between Feb. 8-25, “Chasing Gold” is a documentary series that profiles Team USA athletes, including the USA women’s hockey team, speed skater J.R. Celski, and alpine racer Mekaela Shiffrin.

Another part of NBC’s deal with Snap Inc., has Snapchat hosting short, live moments from the NBC broadcast of the Olympics, the first time a broadcaster has made use of Snapchat’s Live feature for TV networks. The first stream appeared on Snapchat’s Discover tab on Feb. 10, with each live segment lasting between two to six minutes.

Snapchat and NBC are also producing Context Cards, which allow users to access schedules, track medal counts, look up weather information, and read news coverage from the games.

• To mark the Feb. 7 premiere of “Big Brother: Celebrity Edition,” CBS introduced the new, interactive “Big Brother Bot” messenger, for Facebook, Skype, and Kik, allowing users to interact with the show, take quizzes, access exclusive content, and cast votes. The bot links users to live feeds from the show, look at highlight clips from the latest episodes, and participate in polls. Brief character bios of each housemate are also included.

• Coinciding with the debut of its new arts and culture series “Civilisations” on March 1, BBC will debut an augmented reality app for the show. The AR app is part of a collaboration with more than 30 museums across the U.K. and will be available for both Android and iOS devices. The app will let users view and explore artifacts scanned from various museums, covering an ancient Egyptian mummy from the Torquay Museum, Rodin’s Kiss from the National Museum of Wales, and the Umbrian Madonna and Child from the National Museum of Scotland.

The app will include an x-ray feature that lets users look inside objects, a restoration feature that allows users to manipulate objects, and a spotlight feature, which includes audio, annotations and other imagery that accompanies different artifacts.

• To accompany its Jan. 22 premiere of its drama-mystery series “The Alienist,” TNT launched an interactive web site that allows users to join the investigations with psychologist Dr. Laszlo Kreizler and crime reporter John Moore. The site includes a map allowing users to explore locations in the show, and information about forensic science, with the centerpiece of the site being an investigation feature, one that puts users in the mind of a killer.

Those who complete challenges on the site are allowed to enter into a sweepstakes for autographed scripts, posters and other show-related prizes.