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Fanhattan Video Discovery App for iOS

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Overview of Fanhattan:

Fanhattan is one of a growing list of video apps that aims to be the go-to search app for the iPad. Among other video discovery apps like Plizy, Vodio, Squrl and Showyou, Fanhattan wants to not only bring you streaming media, it aims to be your go-to source for all things entertainment. With an entertainment newsfeed and a "What's in Theaters" section programmed into the app, Fanhattan tries to give you more reasons to launch the platform than just finding your favorite movie. This app is geared toward entertainment enthusiasts that want to get the updates on-the-go and wind down with a movie or show at night. With Airplay capability, you can "throw" your Fanhattan finds onto the TV, and enjoy the show.

The Fanhattan iOS App:

Fanhattan lets you launch the app with or without logging in to you Facebook account, although logging in will yield more personalized video recommendations based on your taste preferences. Upon launching the app, the first thing you'll see is a slideshow of advertisements for "featured" movies and shows, and these featured videos serve as the homepage for the app. With premium video sources that include HBO, the CW, and Cinemax, Fanhattan is a contender for most perfect video app - as long as the advertisements don't deter you.

The App Layout:

In the top-right corner of the screen is a small menu that serves as your navigation bar for Fanhattan. Although you may think "watch list" refers to media you've saved in a queue, the Fanhattan app uses this menu item to house its major media shelves. Watch list, which makes the distinction between movies and shows, will take you to more menu options for each media type. Within each "watch list" section you'll find a rotating set of organizational controls that each feature a different way to search and play video. The "My Movies" section is where you can build a traditional queue, and you can also receive alerts when new movies are available.

Another section lets you browse via Facebook, letting you "like" videos you've watched recently and check out the "likes" of your friends. In addition to these viewing strategies, the app offers a browse feature that lets you search for media by genre, and a "smart browse" feature that's like an advanced search. Smart browse may be the most useful feature if you're looking for something in particular, because it allows you to search by genre, release date, viewer ratings, and popularity.

Fanhattan Keeps You Updated:

If you have a hard time keeping up with what's new, and catching cool movies before they expire, the streaming section is a useful tool. It shows you all the latest releases online (according to your premium subscriptions), shows you what's about to expire, brings seasonal videos together, and shows you what's new specifically on Netflix. In addition to keeping up with online content, the app lets you know what's new in theaters and what's coming soon.

In addition to all these handy tools, Fanhattan features a News section that brings you the latest in entertainment news. Compiling stories from the Associated Press, Hollywood.com, and original Fanhattan reporting, the news feed is like a mobile entertainment channel that refreshes throughout the day. If there are specific stars or stories you're interested in, you can 'follow' them to get personalized news.

Fanhattan's motto is "stop searching, start watching," and the app accomplishes this through its preset organizational tools. Whether or not Fanhattan simplifies your streaming video experience depends on if you like these tools. The app is free to download, so give it a shot if you're an iOS user - it may just be the app for you.

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