Interview: Plizy iPad App Curates Video Content Based On Your Interests

Plizy is a new interactive on demand video service that generates video based upon the interests of the viewer and the interests of the viewer's friends. After the jump, Plizy CEO Jonathan Benassaya explains how the service works as well as what we can expect from Plizy in the future.

Plizy is a new video app for the iPad that describes itself as “Flipboard meets Pandora for video, plus social, on your iPad.”  It’s a new interactive on demand video service that generates video based upon the interests of the viewer and the interests of the viewer’s friends.  I had the opportunity to talk to Plizy CEO Jonathan Benassaya about the company’s background, how the service works and what we can expect from Plizy in the future.  Read on to find out more.

Before we get to my interview with CEO Jonathan Benassaya, check out the demo video below.

As you can see in the video, Plizy lets users watch video via Facebook and Twitter channels, build customized channels using keywords, create hand-picked video channels and discuss and share videos via Facebook, Twitter and more.

I was curious about how the idea for Plizy was born.  Benassaya told me, “A year ago, my wife and I were trying to watch something interesting on our television: in the end, after 45 minutes, we didn’t end up watching anything.  I thought, there has to be a better way to watch videos, and set out with my team to find a solution.  Why should we all be presented with the same videos online, when our interests are so different?  Clearly, behavioral targeting and interest recommendation is the future of online video, especially as online video and traditional television converge.”  Benassaya left, a company that he founded in 2007, and decided to focus all his attention on “creating the first ‘intelligent’ video discovery platform.”  A year later, Plizy was born.

For now, Plizy is available only on the iPad, but Benassaya told me, “Plizy will soon be coming to other connected devices, including TVs, set-top boxes and other tablets (Android, Widows 8, etc.).  Our aim is to make Plizy available for all users, no matter what service, platform, or device they are using.”

So how does Plizy work?  “Plizy uses a cloud based recommendation engine, which gathers the information that you have on your social networks, in order to discover new content that you are interested in.  We use a mixture of collaborative filtering, behavioral analysis, and likes and dislikes in order to improve recommendations.”

Finally, I asked Benassaya what we can expect from Plizy in the future.  He told me, “Plizy is aggressively targeting content providers looking to bring their content to new audiences.  We offer networks and content providers something that no one else does: a platform geared towards bringing in new and first time viewers.  Our product is always evolving; however, we are quickly moving to directly target all connected and mobile devices.”

Have you tried Plizy yet?  Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

Megan O’Neill is the resident web video enthusiast here at Social Times.  Megan covers everything from the latest viral videos to online video news and tips, and has a passion for bizarre, original and revolutionary content and ideas.

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