BRITISH BROADCASTER the BBC launched a BBC Sport app today for iPhone and iPod Touch devices.
Following on the success of the BBC's London Olympics 2012 app, which received over two million downloads during the event last Summer, the BBC has launched the long awaited app that pulls sporting news and information from the broadcaster's desktop based BBC Sport web page, due to increasing demand from regular readers.
The app's customisable menu allows users to keep up with sporting events that they are interested in, from breaking football transfer news and gossip to live text coverage of the Premier League, Rugby Union Six Nations championship and the upcoming F1 season.
BBC's senior product manager in Future Media, Lucie Mclean, who overlooked the development of the app, told The INQUIRER, "We started development of the app in summer and have focused on the more popular sports to start with, sticking with the common iOS patterns to make it simple for users."
"Our Olympics app was really useful as it helped us look at the things we definitely wanted to do in the Sport app and continue that strategy of 'everyone gets all the contact they want everywhere' while keeping certain features," she added.
The app includes the introduction of a mobile football live scores section allowing users to follow the action, providing a league-by-league overview of the latest scores and goal scorers at a glance, with dedicated match pages for more in-depth information, bringing together starting lineups, match statistics, live text commentary and the post-game report.
In addition, a new fixtures and results section has been developed to help fans keep on top of all the major UK and international football competitions by selecting any day in the season from the app's calendar.
Mclean said the BBC Sport app will provide links to the Radio Five Live web page where you can listen to the station live.
"You can't do background listening at the moment, so what I want to do is think of how we can use native technology to bring that background listening into the app so you can listen to Five Live while reading the score cards without having to leave the app," Mclean added. "The content is already available on the BBC website but it's this kind of technology we eventually we want the app to do."
Other features, such as live and on-demand video highlights, will also be added to the app in the future, but not any time soon due to the app being in its early stages.
The BBC Sport app will be launched for Android devices with up to 7in screen sizes "in a couple of weeks", Mclean said, adding that there are also plans for a Kindle edition next year. However, there are no plans for an iPad version yet.
"The desktop version looks great on an iPad so that's where we are going to send people for the moment," Mclean added.
The app is available in the Apple App Store now. µ
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