In case you didn't notice, Microsoft and Nokia are holding a pretty major press event right now, and while we've mainly been waiting for some shiny new hardware, a few fresh apps never hurt either. Nokia just made a joint announcement with AOL, unveiling an entertainment hub called Entrance, which will be available only on Nokia's Windows Phone devices. AOL (which happens to be Engadget's parent company) naturally used the app as a way to highlight its various properties, including Moviefone, AOL Music and Huffington Post Entertainment. So, for example, you might watch trailers or buy tickets on Moviefone, or read news from HuffPo. Like its various Android apps, it includes Shoutcast Radio integration with streaming from over 55,000 radio stations worldwide. Perhaps the most compelling bit, though, is an augmented reality feature with overlays for movie posters and show times. The app's free and available for download at the source link below, and we've also got some screenshots to help give you a sense for the look and feel.
AOL EntranceSee all photos
NOKIA and AOL Partner to Release Entrance by AOL, The First and Only All-In-One Entertainment Hub for Nokia Lumia smartphones
Partnership brings AOL entertainment content and functionality to the Windows Phone platform, designed exclusively for the Nokia Lumia series
Palo Alto, California, September 5, 2012 –AOL, Inc (NYSE:AOL) today announced the release of Entrance by AOL – an entertainment hub bringing together multiple marquee AOL properties including AOL Music, Moviefone and The Huffington Post Entertainment in a unique experience designed and built for Nokia Lumia smartphones. In addition to all the latest breaking movie, music, TV and celebrity news, Nokia subscribers receive access to over 55,000 SHOUTcast radio stations and free music album streaming via AOL Music, along with Moviefone's on-device movie search and ticketing features.
Entrance by AOL on Nokia Lumia provides subscribers a unified gateway to consume their favorite music, movie and entertainment content. The app includes the following features:
- A first-of-its-kind Augmented Reality feature enables users to find cinemas and showtimes playing nearby simply by holding up the Lumia smartphone as theaters, movie posters and showtimes appear overlaid on the world around them
- Moviefone integration allows users to view trailers, see nearby showtimes, and buy movie tickets directly from within the app
- Entertainment news about movies, celebrities, music and TV from HuffPost Entertainment, AOL Music and others
- SHOUTcast Radio integration enables streaming from over 55,000 global radio stations
- AOL Music and CD Listening Party (CDLP) provides early access to weekly, and exclusive to AOL only, free full length albums from up-and-coming bands, with the option to buy and download after a free preview
- Interlinked user interface allows users to navigate into and out of specific content topics to explore any movie, celebrity or song
"Entrance by AOL leverages the depth of AOL's content, whilst demonstrating the unique and differentiated experiences partners can bring to Nokia Lumia smartphones. With innovative features such as Augmented Reality, personalized and contextual Live Tiles and beautiful app design, enabled through the rich Windows Phone UI, we believe Nokia consumers will love this exclusive one stop shop for entertainment." said Mark Fletcher, Director, Global Partnering & Application Development, Nokia.
The app was designed so that all news and entertainment content is interlinked. For example, if a user likes a movie, they can see the entire cast with a tap, and continue to drill down to see all of the news related to a specific actor. Users can even listen to the soundtrack of that show and download the music. Multi-linked content helps people easily find what they love, and dig deeper right inside the app. Furthermore, the application leverages the Windows Phone unique horizontal scroll option allowing for smooth navigation across content traditionally better viewed in landscape mode.
"Augmented reality, live streaming music and movie trailers are the perfect use case to show off the capabilities of both the Lumia smartphones and AOL's Mobile development team," said David Temkin, Senior Vice President of Mobile and Mail at AOL. "Entrance shows what's possible when you combine great content with an elegantly designed, incredibly fast handset."