Looking for a way to mimic the buzz of excitement around watching Homeland in its fourth season, Showtime has devised a new version of its trailer that will vibrate slightly in your hand. Variety reports that the network has released what it says is the first “haptically enabled” video for mobile devices, applying the tactile feedback technology to its latest Homeland promo, and allowing Android users to “sense the drama” of the show by making their phones buzz a little bit.
“The subtle, yet impactful placement of the haptic technology builds anticipation, giving the trailer an added element of suspense, achieved through a combined sensory experience,” said Showtime’s EVP of program marketing and digital services Don Buckley, who was tasked with making the addition of vague vibration to a mobile phone video sound as engaging as Homeland has been in recent seasons.
Showtime hopes that viewers will delight in the “suspense” of feeling their smartphones rattle to a small degree, all while a fake bomb explodes on its tiny screen—in much the same way that these viewers will delight in the “suspense” of whether Claire Danes’ Carrie Mathison will do something that seems crazy this season, putting everyone in jeopardy.
To climb aboard the nonstop thrill ride of a faintly shaking phone, Android users will first need to download the Showtime Anytime app, then install the haptic enhancement update, then download and watch the new Homeland trailer. This process will further enable Homeland viewers to recreate the “combined sensory experience” of making it through several convoluted twist and turns to get to an anticlimactic payoff.