Note: reviewed during release preview, may or may not be different now (10/24/12)
Previously having reviewed The CW app I was curious what another dedicated TV channel app has up its sleeve. Enter Syfy. I am a fan of this channel for everything but ghost stories although I admit I do not have much interest in many of the shows in their current line-up.
I like the opening screen. It gives you a nice overview of the series and programs available and it has a simple background. What you can’t see in the screenshot above is that there are three sections. Featured, Shows and Game Trailers. I was not aware that Syfy was a game oriented channel nor that it even showed trailers for them. But one look at their website and it is clear they provide information about sci-fi related games. This is a nice addition since people who like sci-fi might like games in that genre as well.
Click on Shows and you get a complete listing of the shows in “alpha”-betical order. Couldn’t resist that play on words since the first show is Alphas. A nice alternative for those who enjoyed Heroes on NBC a couple of years ago. You can also get more information about each show by clicking on it.
You get a summary of the show, some videos (27 in this case), usually they are either cast interviews or trailers for episodes and cast info. You have no idea what video is about what exactly until you click on it. It would be helpful to have at least short descriptions. At least when you do click on one, not only do you get the description (with larger image), but the rest of the videos for that show appear as well which is helpful.
The videos only play full-screen which may or may not suit your tastes, but they do load quickly. Interesting the cast & crew section does NOT provide information on the actors themselves, not even a link. It is a biography of their character. If it’s a reality show naturally it does provide information about that person, but odd that you can’t find out about the actors here.
The game trailers add a nice dimension, but they do not provide anything beyond the video to tell you about the game and there are no links provided to even go see about purchasing the game.
Finally one huge omission. There is nothing telling you what time these shows are on. It’s nice to get the info about the shows, but how about telling me when they are on. The tile on the start screen is also not live, so it just has the Syfy logo and that’s it. I understand this may be an app preview, but the main purpose I would think of the app is to direct people to watch the shows on your channel. This only takes you there partway and should have been the first priority when creating the app.