Last week I discovered that I could get “paid” to watch TV. Yes, there’s an app for that. It’s called Viggle. It’s a phone app, available for iPhone and Android, that rewards you for watching TV. When you begin watching a show, you check in using the app. When the show is over, Viggle awards you points that can be redeemed for a variety of gift cards; or if you really save up, you can get things like an iPod, an AppleTV, or a Kindle Fire. I’m working towards a Kindle Fire.
Points to Watch
Checking in is pretty simple. The phone will listen to the program that you are watching, recognize the show, and check you in. Occasionally I have had problems getting it to recognize the show. If you are watching live, it’s no big deal. If the app tries to recognize the show twice and doesn’t figure it out, it gives you the option to select the show from the TV listings. But, if you are not watching the show live, you might be out of luck. If the episode is less than a week old, I keep trying, often it will eventually recognize the show. If you do watch your programs later on a DVR, I believe that the app will not recognize the show if you wait more than a week. I don’t know this for sure, but I haven’t been able to check into a USA program that I watch on Hulu. The show is added to Hulu four weeks after it’s aired so this is probably why. It does however seem to recognize shows in syndications. I recently watched a couple of re-runs of “The Big Bang Theory” that were at least a couple of years old and Viggle recognized both of them. Viggle will award you a point for each minute you watch the show. If you watch with a DVR, you can earn all the points for a program by waiting thirty minutes or an hour before starting a new program.
Periodically, Viggle offers a check-in bonus for certain shows. This means extra points if you check-in to a program within 24 hours of it airing. These bonuses are usually 150-300 points per show. Checking in to these shows is a great way to rack up points.
Another way to earn points is to play along with Viggle Live. Viggle Live is basically a trivia game. The questions are based on last week’s episode. Once you check in to a show, you can join the Viggle Live game and earn 15 – 25 points for each correct answer. The game is available through the episode and there are several minutes between questions. Not every show has a Viggle Live game, but so far, it seems that if a show has a game one week, it’s likely they will offer one the following week.
You can also earn points by watching ads on your phone. These are usually promos for TV shows or movies. As near as I can tell, there are usually 2-3 ads available and they can be watched each time you check-in to a program.
I think Viggle is my new favorite app. Not only does it reward me for watching, but there are also a few useful additions to the app. Once you check in to a program, there are links to that show’s Facebook, IMDB, Wikipedia pages and more. If you are like me and often look up actors when you’re watching TV, “Where have I seen her before?” Then you’ll also enjoy that feature. I’m sure the goal of the app is to get you to watch more television and to watch it live. It does a pretty good job of that. I don’t think I’m necessarily watching more TV, I’m just watching more of it live. Like I mentioned, I’m trying to earn enough points for a Kindle Fire (375,000). I figure it will take about a year of serious TV watching to accomplish that. If you want to help you can sign up here and help me earn friend points.