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Apple's new sports app focuses on scores, stats and speed

Apple's new sports app focuses on scores, stats and speed


Apple's interest in the wider world of sports continues to grow. On Wednesday, the company announced its latest app, dubbed “Apple Sports.” This app has a very simple mission. It's supposed to be the fastest and easiest way to get the latest scores and statistics on the teams and players you care about.


“The problem I had as a sports fan, and most people have had as a sports fan, is very simple to solve: How do I get live game scores and stats? '' said Eddie Cue, Apple's senior vice president of services. “And we did this very cleanly, very easy to use, and most importantly in real time in a fast sense. [way]. ”

Cue said the new app will be updated “in most cases faster than TV” because most live events are broadcast on a delayed basis.

The app, currently exclusive to iPhone and free to download for users in the US, UK, and Canada, focuses solely on sports scores, stats, and following your favorite teams. At launch, Apple will support a variety of leagues currently in season, including the NBA, NHL, MLS, men's and women's college basketball, and numerous international soccer leagues such as Bundesliga, La Liga, Serie A, Ligue 1, and Liga MX. is supported. English Premier League.

The company says additional leagues will be added “in future seasons,” including MLB, NFL, college football, WNBA, and NWSL.

Cue said Apple works with a “huge number of providers” to obtain real-time play-by-play data about games in progress and organizes all that information to ensure that what apps display is accurate and accurate. He confirmed that it was quick.

There are a number of apps that offer a similar premise, including those from CBS, ESPN, The Score, and Major League Baseball itself, but Apple aims to make it faster and simpler to see what's happening in-game.

“I think ESPN does a great job with clips and everything they do, but they don't do a great job with sports,” he said when asked why users would want to use Apple Sports over the competition. said: ESPN's app can make it difficult to find the score you're looking for and customize it to your liking.

While ESPN features news and highlights across the app's homepage, with tabs at the bottom for watching games and browsing content from its ESPN Plus streaming service, Cue We're not trying to satisfy every fan's appetite.

In contrast, Apple Sports is “not trying to solve 20 different problems.” Cue admits that it's easy to get game scores from a variety of sources these days, but “if you're trying to do multiple teams, multiple leagues, etc., it's not a great experience. This is what we are trying to solve. “

What's here and what's not?

The Apple Sports app includes real-time information about what's happening in matches and live betting odds.


There's also support for the company's “Live Activity” feature, which displays the latest scores of the teams you follow on your iPhone's dynamic island and lock screen, allowing you to monitor what's happening at a glance if you have a compatible device. You will be able to do it.

The Apple TV app already allows sports fans to follow their favorite teams and view their scores as live activity. You can also find and follow specific teams in Apple News as well, which should make that feature more accessible. If you already have that setting, the new app will carry over that setting.

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Apple Sports focuses heavily on scores and statistics, so it's missing some features by design that fans may be used to. There's no fantasy sports integration or way to follow specific players, and the app doesn't have built-in news, highlights, or social media conversations about ongoing games or the teams you're following. The company still offers an Apple News app where you can get some of that information.

It integrates with the Apple TV app and is available on Apple's platforms (such as MLS games and Friday night MLB games streamed on Apple TV Plus) or on connected apps. , provides quick links to stream the game. to the Apple TV app.

Several leagues, including MLB, NBA, and NFL, have made their apps available on Apple TV, as well as a variety of streaming apps and services that stream sports, including Paramount Plus, Peacock, Prime Video, Max, DirecTV, Sling TV, and Fubo. You can connect to the app. , channels like ESPN and CBS Sports.

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For example, if you connect an app like the NBA app, the Apple Sports app will be able to show you whether a game is available to stream on NBA League Pass (assuming you subscribe to that service).

Apple plans to display pre-match and live betting odds from DraftKings, but it won't be integrated with the betting service at launch. Apple will allow users to hide betting odds in their settings if they wish, but Cue added, “We'll decide later if you can tap to go to DraftKings. Now I just decided I wanted to show up.'' Look at the odds. ”

“We're not opposed” to the bet, he added.

The launch of a dedicated sports app is another step for Apple into sports. This is a deal that has made select Friday night MLB games broadcast on Apple TV Plus, as well as the primary way to watch all MLS games around the world using the Season Pass subscription service. It continues.

The new app is “a continuation of what we've been doing in sports,” Cue said. “There are a lot of issues that we as fans are aware of, but if we can fix them, we'll fix them.”

In addition to MLB and MLS, Apple is rumored to be a bidder for the NFL Sunday Ticket package, which will ultimately go to Google's YouTube TV, and is also rumored as a potential partner for the NBA, whose media rights are currently under bid. mentioned in. .

Cue, a well-known Golden State Warriors fan who has been seen courtside at the team's games, declined to say whether the company would be involved in acquiring these rights.

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