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Android & iOS smartphones get dedicated BBC Olympics app

With two weeks to go until London 2012's opening ceremony, the BBC has announced that its latest mobile sport product, an Olympics smartphone app, is now available for free download on Android and iOS powered devices.

BBC Sport Olympics will feature video, schedules, results and a native feature allowing users to download content to read offline, with the broadcaster releasing a video (below) demonstratinging the app's main functions.

Phil Fearnley, BBC News and Knowledge general manager, opined that the development of a smartphone app kept with the notion of the "first truly digital Olympics," and that it would enable people to tune in to London's historical moment wherever they are.

"The free BBC Sport Olympics app for UK Android and iOS smartphones ensures that everything you need to keep up-to-date with the action is right there at your fingertips. Even when you're out of range of 3G or wireless, we'll still be able to deliver the latest news to you offline," he said.

"The app adds even greater value to the BBC Sport mobile experience, ensuring you never miss a moment of the Games," Mr Fearnley added.

Handsets running Android 2.2 Froyo and iOS 5.0 or above can get the app from today. News and other background information are available immediately, with the app looking to come into its own once the games commence and content like medal counts, live video and text streams, and highlights becomes available.

Users of Apple mobiles will be able to personalise their iOS app, setting their favourite events to a custom tab bar for easy access. Android users should note they must be running Flash to be able to watch video material, while BlackBerry users will have to make do with a more basic app that shortcuts to the central BBC Olympics mobile site.

The release of the app holds good on the BBC's promise earlier in the summer to create dedicated apps for key events in Britain's so-called 'summer of sport.' It also offers a welcome distraction for the broadcaster, which suffered considerable embarrassment earlier in the week when its website suffered a major crash, dragging its popular iPlayer digital catch-up service offline in the process.