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Dr. House couldn't diagnose a good app if his life depended on it

Fox has released InHouse [free], an app that supposedly takes users into the world of House M.D. First off, let me say I'm a fan of the show; it's witty, funny, and keeps me entertained for forty-two minutes each week. The Dr. House app, on the other hand, is lame, boring, and has content that would be better suited to a web site.

When you launch the app you have eight selections ranging from "Free Clinic" to "Media Room." All that any of these selections provide is links to photos or short video clips. There is no interactivity at all. Fox says the app allows House fans to "delve deeper inside the world of Dr. Gregory House and Princeton Plainsboro Teaching Hospital," but it does no such thing.

The best apps offer a level of interactivity. The InHouse app has none, beyond tapping a button to get to another video. For example, one of the eight selections you're presented with is called "Music Room." The Music Room shows the user alternate music selections "considered" for each episode and allows you to buy the songs in the iTunes Music Store. Read that again: "considered for each episode." None of the songs are actually in any episode of House. This portion of the app is nothing but a shill to get House fans to buy Fox-owned songs.

Fox had a great opportunity to build a fun, interactive app. House is a world-class diagnostician. Why couldn't the app allow users to diagnose medical mysteries? I guess that would have gotten in the way of selling music not related to the series at all. This app needs a major overhaul. For now, it's DOA.

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