News & Views

Sky Sports / Sky Sports for iPad

by Contagious Team

British sports broadcaster's app includes in-depth data on football games

Satellite TV broadcaster BskyB has updated its iPad app, enabling subscribers to watch games from the English Premier League, whilst accessing stats on the players and teams competing. 

Sky Sports for iPad lets users watch all six Sky Sports channels live, as well as accessing the latest headlines, image galleries and post-match stats. The update has expanded this functionality to include maps of team formations and every touch from each player on the field. An adjustable timeline lets users study how a team's shape develops throughout a match, and the individual data means that players can be monitored and compared easily. 

The app also grants users access to the stats from the previous six matches of each Premier League team. All information is supplied via leading sports data company Opta, and is identical to the statistics sent to the Sky Sports pundits in the studio. 

David Gibbs, director of Sky Sports digital media, said: 'We have even more updates planned for the app over the coming months for football, continuing to provide fans with the top information and analytical tools that they have come to accept as the golden standard from Sky Sports.' 

BskyB has also introduced Sky Bet to the platform, allowing fans to easily have a punt on the game before or during the match.

Contagious Insight
This is exactly the sort of update that should excite and engage existing Sky Sports subscribers and app users. Football fans, like many other sports fans, crave information on the game, and their club. Just head down to a pub during a Premier League game in England, and you will hear groups of friends reeling off statistics and advice on how team formations should be altered, or which striker the gaffer should buy next. Sky's own Monday Night Football show - in which pundits analyse team performances using the same Opta data - has also proven popular with viewers, with one million tuning in this week. The new features in the app, therefore, feed this craving for information, letting fans get closer to the game than ever before. 

Last July Contagious reported on adidas's collaboration with Major League Soccer in the USA, in which the brand's MiCoach personal system was sewn into the shirt of every player in the league. This enabled both coaches and players to track on-pitch performance, and provided fans with in-depth, real-time stats on their favourite teams. Both the adidas technology and the Sky Sports app deliver genuine added value for passionate sports supporters and, excitingly, both are set to expand the amount of data available over the coming seasons. 

It's also important to point out the integration of Sky Bet into the iPad app - another innovation with the latest update. Football betting is a big business in the UK, experiencing a turnover of £1.015m ($1.635m) between April 2011 and March 2012, according to The Gambling Commission's industry report. And for the fans and gamblers using the app, the ability to obtain information on player performance, team form, etc. must make a bet just that little bit more appealing... 

Sky Sports

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