The founders of Skype may not have a job at eBay, but they have reached an important milestone with internet TV service Joost. After two years, the site is out of beta. They aren’t planning a big marketing push to announce the change. They say that they’ve gotten so much media coverage they can count on word of mouth.
Joost got 1.5 million sign-ups, during their invite-only beta stage. This is version 1, and it’s still in beta, but now open to the public (as of yesterday). After so much hype, they have been very low key. They waited for people to notice. The only announcement to let you know anything has changed is with a low key post on the forum. That doesn’t seem like a good idea. Not even a press release?
Like Skype calls on eBay, it doesn’t seem to be sticking yet. Figures I read said only about 10 percent of the testers are currently active on the site.
They hope to make the service more viral by opening the API. Developers will be able to make custom widgets and other programs to enhance and share content on the site. Hopefully, like YouTube it will be easy to add clips or shows to your blog or Facebook profile.
Joost combines elements of traditional TV, with channels but it’s online and has chat and search by keyword. As opposed to YouTube, the site offers commercial TV shows and movies. They have better quality and the shows are full screen.
They have more than 15,000 shows so far and they’re all free and supported by advertising. They say there are shows from CBS, Major League Baseball, MTV, Turner, and Comedy Central.
Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis – who started Joost, also founded Kazaa, a P2P music service.