Tag Archives: Technology

Sports+ – An App Review

Greetings readers,

There’s a new app on the market for people who love sports who want to write their own story. It’s called Sports+, created by Hitpost. It’s available at the App Store, the Android Market, and online as well.

As of 10/7/11, Sports+ has an average rating of 4.0 out of 5 at the Android Market. In the App Store, it has a 4.5 out of 5 rating with about 12 ratings and one review. There has also been a few interviews done, with one coming from the Huntington Post.

I looked up sports apps for this purpose, and found this to be one of the Android Market’s featured apps. Wondering if it was anything similar to Google+, I decided to download it and give it a try. I have yet to do so, but it could always be something I do down the road if I go to a Wright State game.

While there is an option for scores, what makes Sports+ different is the option to write stories on photos and sporting events. When you boot the app up, it asks you to create an account (which involves linking up to either your Facebook or Google+ account.) Then you can pick the teams you’d like to follow, and it will trim down the stories.

With my two-hour test drive, the app ran fairly smooth but did crash three times. Your results may vary. Some reviewers did complain about the constant crashing, which crashes are minor annoyances.

I will say, I was really impressed with the lists of teams. In the NCAA section, they have teams that are not Division I, like the Urbana Blue Knights, the Wilberforce Bulldogs, and the Anderson (Indiana) Ravens. There are other smaller schools not listed, such as the Wilmington (Ohio) Quakers and the Wittenberg Tigers, but the list is still massive. To me, having the Wright State Raiders as an option is the most important thing. Most apps don’t have that as an option.

There are a few sports that aren’t available yet, like MLS. However, nobody has ever said enough to updates, so don’t be shocked to see it included in an update one day.

I did a little experiment with the sharing/story feature, and it works quite well. Granted, it was one of the last things I done, but it does work well. You might have seen a story where I shared something from Sports+, as well.

Overall, I recommend Sports+ if you love sharing sports with your friends.

Sources of information from Hitpost, the Huntington Post, the Android Market, and the Apple App Store. I am not affiliated with Hitpost.

Until next time,

-Lee

ScoreMobile vs. ESPN ScoreCenter – An App Comparison

Greetings readers,

Today I have another app review for you. Actually, two. Today, I’m comparing the ESPN ScoreCenter application with the ScoreMobile app.

If you have a smart phone, you might not want to have two applications that are designed to do the same thing. Both are designed to give you scores around the nation. Both give you options to pick your favorite teams so you can see those scores first.

Before we begin, let’s get to the basics. ScoreCenter is created by ESPN, and you can find their webpage here. ScoreMobile is created by Score Media, and you can find their website here.

On the Android Market, the ESPN ScoreCenter has a rating of 4.2 out of 5 (as of 10-6-11.) Recent comments talk about how slow the app runs and how unstable it has become. Recently, users have been complaining about having “No Internet Connection” when in a Wi-Fi or a 3G zone. At Apple’s App Store, ScoreCenter has a 3.5 stars, where the main complaint is the ads.

ScoreMobile ranks in the Android Market with a 4.4 out of 5. The recent comments describe how they like it, but one does say it’s slowed down as of late because of the Gingerbread upgrade. In the App Store, it has three stars and two user comments liking it better than ScoreCenter because of the vast selection of options.

From personal experience, I have used ScoreMobile on my phone and ScoreCenter twice; on my iPod and my phone. I loved using ScoreCenter on my iPod, since it was smooth to use and the sliding from league to league was well designed.

When I got my phone, I downloaded it first and was disappointed with the lack of sliding to get to the next league, as well as the slow loading times (it took about a minute to load the NFL scores.) It  ran a lot slower than the iPod counterpart. It took me awhile to decide to download ScoreMobile, but I was glad I did. It runs so much smoother on Android than the ScoreCenter app. This one has options for standings, stats for games, and more leagues available.

I also emailed the makers of ScoreMobile to suggest adding a sport, and I got an email the next day. They were quick about replying, and very kind as well. (By the way, I requested College Baseball scores, which neither app has.)

As of recently, you can slide on ScoreCenter. It takes a few seconds to load, but the sliding animation is a bit jerky. With ScoreMobile, you have to pick the league from a button. Both have options to pick your favorite teams, both show scores, both have previews. Both have tons of sports to follow.

With ScoreCenter, you have the ESPN signature scrolling news bar below, as well as news in the league, and full standings. There’s also a page just dedicated for your teams, as well. With ScoreMobile, there are injury reports, options to looking at entire schedules, stats, standings, video, and news underneath the option button.

In other words, both are very similar. The main difference: performance. ScoreMobile wins in this regard, with its smooth operation and fast load times whereas ScoreCenter is still a bit jerky and does take a bit to finish.

To wrap it up: both are terrific apps. If you’re a fan of news and ESPN’s coverage, check out ESPN ScoreCenter. If you want the same features but a quicker app, download ScoreMobile.

Sources of information from the Android Market and the Apple App Store, as well as ESPN.com and thescore.com. All ratings and comments are recent as of October 6th, 2011 at 9:21AM. I am not affiliated with either company.

Until next time,

-Lee

SportCaster – An App Review

Greetings readers,

Today I’m here to put in a quick review of the app called “SportCaster.” Created by OneLouder, the same company that has FriendCaster and TweetCaster available.

The application is currently free, but there is a pro version available that is ad-free. As of 9/23/11 in the Android Market, it has an average rating of 4.4 out of 5.

Currently, only NCAA Football and NFL Football are the only sports available, but there will be plans to increase the coverage of sports as those seasons progress.

Upon starting the app, you have a few options to pick from. You can see what people on Twitter are saying about the game, without actually owning a Twitter account. You can also keep up with schedules, standings, and scores. Another nice feature is the ability to track players for your Fantasy Football team.

You can fine-tune what you see by selecting what teams you want to see, as well as filtering players, media, and others out of the feed.

When you check on scores, you have a preview awaiting you as well as the conversation as it happens.

The actual app runs smoothly, there isn’t any bugs (from what I can tell, anyways), and it’s really handy for football season.

One downfall is the lack of sports, which should be fixed as we head closer to the seasons. So if you aren’t a fan of American Football, you should skip this one for now. Also, it seems like mid-major football programs are forgotten, so count on every single team making it to the list.

Otherwise, I highly recommend this app for your smart phone. This app is available through Apple’s App Store and the Android Market.

Picture, information from SportCaster’s official website and OneLouder’s website. I am not affiliated with OneLouder.

Until next time,

-Lee

Skating in the Fair Forest

Greetings readers,

Today’s post is a little different, since it does not cover a team or a certain issue in sports. It is instead a post about what COULD happen. I know, why talk about something that isn’t set in stone? Well, this is a place that I fondly remember.

In case you haven’t heard, the Cincinnati Mall (yes, that is what it’s called) might be the home of a new ice rink, suitable for high school, youth, and adult league teams. Read the story here.

Currently, the mall is empty. If you’ve been in the mall, you know it feels like a blank, dark museum rather than a place to buy goods. It’s so bad, that there’s one entire wing closed to the public and without electricity.

This place was awesome when I was a kid. For starters, it was the only one nearby where there was an actual small amusement park in the center court. There was Pac-Man (I know, a few years late), bumper cars, mini-golf, and the giant Ferris wheel (see picture.) They got rid of everything cool in the late 90’s, and changed names around 2004, where they had a Steve and Barry’s store (anyone remember that store?) It looked like it would work out, but that’s not the point of this blog. If you’re interested in finding out more about the mall, check here. It looks sad, and you can see a sign still up from the Forest Fair days (hint: look at the top of the escalators.)

The point is, this is a big thing that could happen for the empty mall. It’s certainly big enough to hold a rink, and it would help serve a purpose to the giant structure. It could also help spread hockey to the area. One area being considered for the ice is the old Bigg’s store (yes, Forest Fair had a grocery store until 2008.) If that doesn’t work, there’s talks of adding a water park in the former hypermarket. The measurements of the old store is roughly 250,000 square feet, according to the article from the Business Courier.

Another goal is to have Candlewood Suites take over the old Steve and Barry’s space, which once was an Elder-Beerman.

It would be nice to have something in the mall that deals with sports and get hockey in the area. It would help bring traffic into the mall and hopefully help spread hockey programs around the area. According to the article, it could be a while until we see the rink (about three years.) We can hope that it does go through.

Source of information from the Business Courier of Cincinnati. Picture from city-data.com.

Until next time,

-Lee

Concussed Out II – Madden and Co.

Greetings readers,

It’s no secret how popular the Madden series is to the sports video game world. Year after year, it’s the football game most people buy to play as their favorite team. Whatever your opinion is on video games based on sports, you can’t deny that Madden is the king of the NFL games.

There’s been some additions to the series, such as the quarterback sights, making custom teams and players, and many more features. Concussions could be another feature to the series.

From ESPN, that move is supported by John Madden himself. This feature would teach people about the effects of concussions. The President of EA Sports Peter Moore said that it wasn’t fair to have concussed players return after one quarter.

One of my favorite parts of the article is Madden telling the New York Times that it’ll be an osmosis effect, teaching others the effects of concussions.

Along with the concussion effects, helmet-to-helmet tackles are excluded from Madden ’12. “…if we show players playing through concussions, then kids won’t understand.”

I like the changes planned, as it shows an effort to stay in touch with the game today. Luckily there is no Lockout Mode in the game. Like I previously mentioned, you could be a person that questions why sports games are constantly remade or you could be a die-hard that picks up every single game possible, these changes are actually important. According to the article, you can expect this new game in August, even if the teams are still locked out.

Source of information from ESPN.

Until next time,

-Lee