Hearing TED’s impressive list of speakers once required an exclusive invitation and a several day commitment. The organization launched an iPhone app on Tuesday that makes it as easy as flipping on a radio station.
“What we’ve noticed in the last year is that mobile has become an increasing online venue,” says June Cohen, the Director of TED Media.
TED Mobile for iPhone is the organization’s second mobile app. In October, it launched an iPad app that has since been downloaded 1.9 million times.
The iPhone app, like its iPad counterpart, allows users to browse and bookmark TED’s library of 18-minutes-or-less talks by prominent thought leaders. They can request a playlist of talks by theme, or by the amount of time they have. And they can easily share talks with social networks. New to TED on the iPhone app is a “radio” feature that continuously plays TED talks. For the first time, users can tune into the continuous audio lineup without searching for a specific talk.
Cohen says the iPhone app is an extension of the digital strategy that TED launched in 2006, when its talks first became available online.
“Right now our entire mission is to spread ideas,” she says, “and we think of the number of video views as a good proxy for how many ideas we’ve spread.”