NBC’s ‘Million Second Quiz’ App: Strategic and Addicting

App has kicked off "Million Second Quiz" game play weeks before the show's debut

NBC’s ambitious gameshow “Million Second Quiz” may not debut until Sept. 9, but on iPhone and iPad screens across the nation, the competition has already begun.

As of this afternoon, my score on the Million Second Quiz app clocks in at 820 points. The game, a welcome distraction from the soul-sapping experience that is Candy Crush, features 10-question rounds focused on pop culture facts — think trivia surrounding “Friends,” tennis champs, historical tidbits, and the like.

Aside from bragging rights and a new way to procrastinate (who doesn’t need that?), users are also offered a chance to become a “Line Jumper,” or a gamer who is pulled from their home to take part in the Gotham-set, live gameshow next month. (And meet host Ryan Seacrest, which could be equally as appealing to some.)

One has to surpass 3,500 points in order to be eligible for “Line Jumper” status, which means I need to stop writing this story now and devote my life to Million Second Quiz, and also defeat “StephanieM” from New Jersey, who decimated me in my last round on the game.

Can someone tell “StephanieM” to stop playing the game? According to her avatar, she likes dirt bikes, if that helps any in identification.

Prolific players aside, the Million Second Quiz app exemplifies an almost seamless approach to integrating digital elements into the promotion of a TV show. The app introduces users to “Million Second Quiz” branding, the show’s pop culture trivia format, and even boasts a countdown to the gameshow strip’s premiere, breaking down the seconds till its bow on NBC.

Plus, the app is pretty darn shiny, and has mystifying music, to boot. It’s also free, which is everyone’s favorite number.

Playing to “Million Second Quiz’s” advantage is the fact that its complementary app, unveiled weeks before the show’s debut, has immediately initiated gameplay for the program itself with the “Line Jumper” stakes. Though the cameras have not started rolling on the “Million Second Quiz” set, we’re already playing the game, with the premiere in mind.

And while NBC declined to release any preliminary data about number of downloads for the Million Second Quiz app, the app has already stimulated discussion on social media, as Twitter users chat about their point hauls and addictive relationship with the game. Its exemplary of organic TV marketing:


The app will factor into “Million Second Quiz’s” broadcasts during its 12-day strip on NBC, as users will be able to play along with the show in real time, answering the same questions as contestants and comparing scores.

The Million Second Quiz app is available for iPhone and iPad users right now through the App Store, though NBC promises it will roll the app out on Android devices soon. For those who want to compete and don’t have an Apple product, the game is also currently available on NBC’s “Million Second Quiz” page.

The Million Second Quiz” is produced by All3 Media America, Studio Lambert and Universal Television. Stephen Lambert, Eli Holzman, David A. Hurwitz and Ryan Seacrest serve as executive producers.

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