Hands-on experience: Apple Sports provides limited experience tracking your favorite teams

Apple Sports

Apple's new Sports app is a surprisingly empty experience with a lot of potential but minimal interface and focus. Betting odds can put people off.

Every time Apple introduces a new app, there's usually a good reason for it. An app typically serves as an example of what Apple considers the ideal entry point for this category, and Apple Sports is exactly that.

When you first launch Apple Sports, you're greeted with empty space. While we already follow several NFL, NCAA Football and MLS teams on Apple News, only our Nashville MLS team was visible.

Apple says support for other leagues, such as the NFL, will come later. However, it seems strange that users can't at least select their favorite teams, especially since the interface already exists in Apple News.

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As far as we can tell, Apple Sports will soon be the new home for all things sports. Let's hope Apple takes the Apple Stocks approach and includes a Sports News section in the near future.

For now, let's look at the application in its current form.

A simple application for iPhone

If you watch American football and nothing else , the application will be empty until the fall. For testing purposes, we added NBA, NCAAW, NCAAM, MLB, and MLS.

Follow leagues and teams to see data in the application

The My Leagues page by default shows upcoming games in any of the leagues we've selected. Information includes team name, logo, standings and betting odds.

Clicking on one of these games reveals detailed betting odds and win/loss metrics. The Upcoming section shows you the weekly games scheduled for the leagues you follow.

The “Yesterday” section displays the results of the games of the previous day, if any. Clicking on them brings up detailed statistics about the game.

Get statistics about a completed game

When you go to the “My Teams” section or any type of specific league, the same “Today”, “ Upcoming” and “Yesterday's” options.

The current score and game clock are displayed prominently while you play. Connecting to a live game provides real-time betting options and team statistics.

Live scores and game broadcasts are available on Apple Sports, but live streams are only available in the Apple TV app

The Apple TV link appears if the game can be viewed from an app or service connected to Apple TV. In our example, the Premier League game was displayed in the Apple TV app with Live Activity support.

Even though the Play by Play section is filled with the same information found in the Apple TV app, there is no Live Activity for the game in the Apple Sports app. Apple may add the ability to follow games and receive updates from Apple Sports in a later update.

In the live game viewing mode there is also a “Roster” section. It provides information about the players on the field and what replacements are in place.

Sports Betting

The Apple Sports app prominently displays sports betting metrics from Draft Kings. It appears at the top of each match detail view and is inserted into individual match cards in the main list view.

Betting odds can be turned off in Settings

If you don't want to see betting odds, there is a way to turn them off, but not in the Sports app. This setting is located in the Apple Settings app, at the bottom of the list of installed apps.

Tap the Sports app in Settings, then tap the Hide Betting Odds button.

Apple Sports Support

Apple continues to promote sports and its coverage across all of its services. After MLB and MLS, Apple began rolling out sports viewer-focused features to other services.

Apple News has a much more sophisticated user interface for displaying sports news and information.

Apple Music has playlists created by the team, Apple News has a dedicated “Sports” tab. , and the updated Apple TV app has a prominent Sports tab next to the MLS tab.

You can’t hide from sports either. Navigating the App Store, news, music, or any other Apple service app can bring you face to face with an ad for Lionel Messi.

The Apple Sports app is interesting for what it could be, but today it is basic. Expect more Apple services to be added to the app soon.

If you're wondering why Apple cares about the Sports app, other than cynically promoting its own sports services, it's obvious. Sports-focused apps are a nightmare, filled with ads and in-app purchases, and offering more direct ways to gamble.

Yes, Apple shows Draft Kings data, which can be turned off, but having a built-in iPhone interface for tracking your favorite teams is excellent. If only Apple could get into the adult coloring app market, because this is yet another disgusting find for elder manipulation and weekly subscription hell.

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