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Apple Sports Enters the Field: Can it Keep Up with the Big Players?

by Suzanne Kantra on February 21, 2024

Sports fans, the game just got more interesting. Apple has launched its free sports app, Apple Sports, promising a streamlined experience focused on the essentials. But in a crowded field with powerhouses like theScore, ESPN, Bleacher Report, and Eurosport, does Apple's newcomer have the legs to compete?

Apple's Game Plan: Simplicity and Integration

Apple Sports prioritizes simplicity and seamless integration with the greater Apple ecosystem. Think of it as a sports-focused extension of the "My Sports" feature you might know from Apple TV or Apple News. This means that keeping track of your favorite leagues and finding live games on your Apple TV (with the right subscriptions) becomes incredibly easy.

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Compared to the often-cluttered interfaces of rivals like ESPN and Bleacher Report, Apple Sports offers a refreshingly clean layout. It aims to give you the scores, stats, and key moments without distractions.

Two screenshots of Apple Sports app. On the left you see upcoming games and on the right you see information about a specific game and league stats.

Apple Sports app screenshots showing upcoming games on the left and a specific game on the right.

Where Apple Sports Might Need to Step Up

Apple's current league coverage doesn't quite match the breadth of theScore or even Eurosport. While popular leagues like NBA, NHL, and major soccer competitions are there, it's missing major ones such as MLB and the NFL. Apple promises expansion of its coverage in upcoming seasons.

Similarly, hardcore fans crave more than just the basics. The in-depth news coverage, analysis, and commentary found on ESPN or Bleacher Report are currently missing from Apple Sports. And while many love fantasy sports, Apple Sports doesn't yet offer that feature - a major strength of theScore.

The Verdict (For Now)

Apple Sports is a strong start, particularly if you're an Apple enthusiast. It's free, offers a clean experience, and makes watching those live games a breeze. That said, if you want a true sports powerhouse with extensive news, deep analysis, and features like fantasy leagues, the established players still hold a distinct advantage.

Apple Sports has the potential to shake things up, but it depends on whether they expand their coverage and features. For now, it's a fantastic option for those who want a quick, no-nonsense sports fix within the Apple world.

[Image credit: Techlicious]

For the past 20+ years, Techlicious founder Suzanne Kantra has been exploring and writing about the world’s most exciting and important science and technology issues. Prior to Techlicious, Suzanne was the Technology Editor for Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and the Senior Technology Editor for Popular Science. Suzanne has been featured on CNN, CBS, and NBC.


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