Eurosport’s iPhone app has just broken the three million downloads mark. There are plenty of other spots apps, so what is it that crowds rush to download the app from Europe’s most popular sport channel? We’ve played with the newest update to find out – and it’s certainly a competitive offering.
The new incarnation has been tweaked to improve performance – especially on loading Eurosport.com – the hub of sports knowledge. It also comes with some pretty standard sports-app features: live results, news, standings and fixtures.
There are two elements that make the new app a match-winner, however. The first is real-time text commentary. Like the updates found on SkySports or the BBC’s website, descriptions of the match’s action will appear on-screen as they’re updated. It’s perfect for poor 3G areas, keeping up-to-date at weddings and letting other people watch TV on a Saturday for a change.
The other major feature is real-time chat of talking points, letting users reproduce the sports pub environment from the safety of their iPhone. Due to the chat-room nature of this, expect more swearing, but less glass attacks than a real pub. Both features really bring home the immediacy of sport – it’s happening now, and it’s being transferred to you live via Eurospot’s app.
Of course, you don’t want to be glued to one app the whole time you’re on your phone, which is why the newest version of the app included goal alerts for your favourite team. We couldn’t test it, but we’re pretty sure every goal scored by your favourite football team, or try in Rugby, can push an alert to keep you up-to-date whether you’re sending a text or playing another game.
Of course, the popularity could be down to the nine different languages it’s available in, meaning there are plenty of European audiences for it to pick up on.
While Eurospot is a competent app, we’re looking to the future for the really exciting stuff. According to our sources, there’ll be a live streaming version for the iPad next year, bring all the action to the biggest portable screen around. We’ll keep you updated.