NEW YORK -- MTV released a full season of a new series about a luckless high school football team on its mobile application on Friday, Oct. 25, a week before the first episode will be shown on TV.
It appears to be a new milestone in the fast-moving world of technology changing traditional television content, much like when Netflix made an entire season of "House of Cards" available at once through the streaming service. MTV made its free app available on iPhones, iPads, iPods and the Xbox 360 in June, and nearly 2 million have been downloaded.
The series, "Wait 'Til Next Year," is a 12-episode docudrama about a high school football team that lost 43 games in a row and the community surrounding it.
"It will be fun to see if we can get them to come back and watch on television," said Kristin Frank, MTV's executive vice president of connected content.
That's always been a worry among networks about new content delivery forms, since the financial underpinning of the business is still largely dependent on viewers watching programs -- and their commercials -- on television. But MTV figures that many people who watch the series on the app will become promotional vehicles themselves, spreading the word about it on social networks and encouraging others to watch on TV.
MTV figured "Wait 'Til Next Year" would be a good test case for how many people are interested in using the app for new content, since it's a series that's starting without any established stars.
Beyond the football team, the series focuses on cheerleaders, fans, parents and others trying to keep up enthusiasm for a program that hasn't won a game in five years.
It debuts on television on MTV at 9 p.m. on Friday, Nov 1.