We are seekers. We always want something new to experience, but the iTunes Store is sorely missing social ways to discover music, movies, TV, and books. Bitcovery fills the gap. Add friends whose taste your respect, see what media they’re sharing or saving, check out what’s trending, preview the content, and buy it in Bitcovery for iOS, which just launched on stage in the TechCrunch Disrupt Battlefield.
You’d think someone would have nailed this by now, but alas. GoodReads was great for books and Spotify’s not bad at music, but no one has succesfully tackled media discovery holistically.
“In the past, a friend would come to my house, look at my CD collection or books on my bookshelf and see what I’m listening to or reading. But now the problem is that our books and music are trapped in our devices” Bitcovery founder Raj Lalwani tells me. He’s set out to make our collections discoverable again.
Open up Bitcovery and you’ll see a Pinterest-style grid of hot content, sliced into tabs for music, movies, books, and tv, plus sections for New, Trending, and All-Time. Tap an album and you can preview all the songs right from within the app — no bouncing back and forth to the iTunes Store until you’re ready to buy. That makes it quick to sample a ton of content and find what scratches your itch.
Really, these chart-based discovery features just expand on what’s already in the iTunes Store. What could make Bitcovery shine is its social features. Like and save your favorite content to keep track of it and share it with friends, then use your phone’s address book to follow your savviest buddies and get their picks.
The company was founded by Lalwani, who previously built Social Calendar. That Facebook app was at one point the 19th most popular app on the social network, and ended up being acquired by Walmart Labs. Lalwani has raised over $300,000 from Play And Play Tech Center and some other investors to build Bitcovery.
The app is far from perfect. Bitcovery’s design is drab, there are too many buttons and features on each screen, purchases don’t instantly populate in your Bitcovery collection, and it’s hard to know when exactly you’ll get pushed to the iTunes app. Really, I think the world needs a version of Bitcovery for discovering great apps more than another music or book discovery platform.
But if it works, Bitcovery could rack up revenue quickly. It already takes a 7% cut of all purchases made through the app thanks to iTunes affiliate payouts. And Lalwani tells me he believes big music labels, movie studios, and authors would be happy to pay for promotion in the app to vault to the top of the charts.
It might seem simple, but it’s anything but stupid. You could already share photos on Facebook, but Instagram took it to another level with a dedicated social network. Bitcovery wants to do the same for finding digital entertainment.
Download Bitcovery for iOS