Multiplex chain, PVR Cinemas has released mobile applications for iPhone/iPod Touch, iPad (download) and Android (download), allowing users to keep a tab on movies running currently or due for release in PVR Multiplexes in their city, check show timings and book tickets. The app has been developed by HT Mobile solutions, and maintains a consistent look and feel across mobile OS platforms. This is not the first time that PVR has released a mobile app. If one recalls there used to be a Java based app, although exclusively for Airtel subscribers.
A few observations:
- Mobile number registration: Users need to register their Mobile number and e-mail address in order to use the app.
- Movie Listings: The app lists Movies on the basis of shows playing within the next two hours, and all shows, in addition to movies coming soon and next change. Movie info comprises of show timings, genre, cast, duration and synopsis, along with a trailer link to YouTube and the option to book tickets. Movie listings can also be viewed, based on Cinemas.
- Landscape version: The app makes good use of the landscape mode, sorting movie listings on the basis of whether they are from Hollywood, Bollywood or regional cinema, when the user rotates the device.
- Deals, Promotions, History: The Deals section displays promotional offers. The app also allows users to track their booking history.
- Payments: Interestingly, users can choose to pay for movie tickets through their credit cards or just block tickets, and collect them from the ticket counter an hour before the movie show, making the payment at the counter. The latter is not even available on PVR’s website. Perhaps PVR was not sure if users will be comfortable entering credit card details on a mobile app. This could also be because the app does not include a net banking option. BookMyShow, the online service that aggregates movie ticket booking from various cinema chains, supports net banking as well as debit cards, as payment options.
- Convenience Charge: PVR continues to levy a convenience charge on each ticket booked, so it’s definitely monetizing its online and mobile ticket sales.
This comes as a good news to iPhone/iPad users since the PVR website was not optimized for these devices, and it was impossible to book tickets through it. The PVR Cinemas website has also undergone a massive overhaul, but we’ve seen users still report problems booking tickets through it. Previously, Reliance ADAG’s BIG Cinemas had also released an app for movie ticket bookings.