Get Email Notifications on Your TV with Comcast and IFTTT
Ever worry that you’ll miss an appointment or important email because you’re too engrossed in the latest Real Housewives or that Law & Order marathon you just couldn’t miss? Comcast and IFTTT are coming to the multitasking rescue. The pair have teamed up to let you to send a variety of notifications, from Gmail to Pinterest to LinkedIn, to your television via Comcast’s X1, its answer to smart TV set-top boxes such as Roku and Apple TV.
IFTTT, short for “if this, then that,” helps non-technical users automate their lives by integrating a variety web services and gadgets without the need to actually learn how to code. You can just log in to the company’s site and begin connecting services together.
For example, you can use it to send yourself text message reminders; automatically back up your Instagram photos to Google Drive; or, controversially, to keep digital tabs on your spouse or partner. IFTTT has been working to become the center of the smart home and the “Internet of Things.” In that sense, IFTTT could help the TV, historically the most important screen in most families’ homes, become a hub of activity in the house of the future. Dishwasher done running? Doorbell ringing? Time to put the kids to bed? Just keep an eye on the TV set.
Of course it’s easy to see this going wrong. No one wants to see notifications for email spam during a dramatic season finale, and you don’t want your friends to see your embarrassing calendar reminders during the big game. For most of us, our smartphone screens have supplanted the TV as our notification source. But it makes sense to occasionally just turn our phones off and enjoy a movie while enabling only the most important alerts to interrupt our viewing pleasure.