BBC Sport mobile app is launched

BBC Sport has launched a brand new mobile app offering users all the latest news, scores and commentary on the go.

The app is available in Apple’s app store for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch as of today, while an Android version is promised in the “next few weeks”. The app still requires development and testing on Google’s platform to make sure it works across a wide range of Android devices. A version optimised for Amazon’s Kindle Fire will follow in “due course,” says the BBC.

Containing the same content as the BBC Sport website, the hybrid app incorporates extra features and functionality from native app technology for enhanced usability. On Apple devices, this includes adopting the typical iOS pattern for adding and re-ordering links – enabling users to assemble a list of their favourite sports for swift navigation to the news of their interest.

BBC Sport says the app brings breaking stories and live text commentaries from a range of sports, in depth football coverage including live scores and table stats, live audio streams from radio 5 live and 5 live Sports Extra, social media sharing options, and, “coming soon”, live and on demand video.

The service follows in the footsteps of the BBC’s Olympics app which attracted almost two million downloads in the UK over the summer.

Lucie McLean, executive product manager for BBC Sport’s mobile services, says her team learned a huge amount from the development of the Olympics app, especially in terms of Android compatibility, which wasn’t spread across some of the platform’s larger phones and smaller tablets. The new sport app will be consequently be available for Android devices with a width of 7in or smaller.

“We are developing the app for Apple and Android devices which currently account for approximately 75% of the UK smartphone market,” said McLean on the BBC’s Internet blog, offering no indication of a Windows Phone version just yet. “We haven't ruled out developing the app for other platforms but building apps is expensive and as a publicly-funded organisation we have to prioritise the areas where we can reach the most users at the lowest costs.”