ESPN Brings WatchESPN Live Video Coverage Into Main iOS App

ESPN today announced an update to its iOS app that will let users stream live sporting events from the separate WatchESPN service directly within the core app, a feature that would previously redirect users to a separate download of WatchESPN. Specifically concerning videos, the ESPN app before today’s update only allowed for short clips and game highlights.

“Offering the convenience of live streaming within one app reinforces the value of the multichannel subscription,” said Sean Breen, Senior Vice President of Affiliate Sales, Disney & ESPN Media Networks. “Even with WatchESPN’s recent record-breaking viewership, we continue to be aggressive in driving awareness to a large scale audience and to incentivize video subscribers to authenticate.”

ESPN representatives promised that logging into the new app will be the same process as before, and users can expect to see a simple „WatchESPN“ tab at the bottom right of the screen. On the iPad, the app will also support multitasking with a picture-in-picture mode that keeps playback rolling even as users leave the app’s homepage.

The company noted that it will be keeping WatchESPN up on the App Store as a solo, „full experience,“ for those who specifically want live streaming capabilities and none of the various other game-tracking features of the base app. To use WatchESPN in any capacity, users have to check for support from their cable provider and then link the two accounts within the app.

ESPN mentioned that the move to consolidate its two popular mobile apps comes after „record-breaking audience viewership“ for its WatchESPN software across all platforms of its availability. September was its most-viewed month ever – excluding months the World Cup took place – with 11 million total viewers on the app that watched 2.2 billion minutes in total of ESPN content.

Tag: ESPN
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Tim Cook: 40 Million People are Using Apple News

Apple CEO Tim Cook revealed Apple News usage numbers for the first time during today’s fourth quarter earnings call, announcing the service has approximately 40 million users.

Cook did not specify whether that number represented people who use the Apple News app on a regular basis or if it simply measured the number of people who have accessed the app at one point or another, so it’s still difficult to gauge the popularity of Apple News.

Introduced alongside iOS 9, Apple News was initially restricted to the United States, but with the launch of iOS 9.1, Apple News expanded to the UK and Australia for the first time.

Apple News is an all-new app for iOS 9 that’s designed to aggregate stories from a wide range of sources into a single mobile-friendly format for the iPhone and the iPad. It’s similar in design to magazine-style news apps like Flipboard and Zite and replaces the previous Apple Newsstand app.

Apple has partnered with dozens of publications for Apple News, like The New York Times, CNN, ESPN, The Atlantic, The Daily Mail, Slate, and more. To get the latest news and rumors from MacRumors, make sure to add MacRumors to Apple News by clicking the link.

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Apple tried to score ESPN SportsGuy for exclusive podcast

Apple is looking to create its own original content, and according to a new report, that almost included signing former ESPN ‘Sports Guy’ Bill Simmons to provide an exclusive podcast for Apple users. ESPN abrupty announced that they would not be renewing Simmons’ contract earlier this year, which led Apple media boss Eddy Cue to […]

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Apple Enlists Networks to Negotiate With Local Affiliates in Streaming TV Talks

Apple’s discussions with ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox for its much-rumored streaming TV service are gaining momentum, according to the New York Post. The report claims that Apple has enlisted networks to negotiate with local TV stations on their behalf, and the networks are said to be close to securing those rights with affiliate groups such as Tribune and Sinclair.

Networks are reportedly telling affiliates that they will be able to share in the revenue generated from Apple’s streaming TV service if they offer their feeds on the platform. The inclusion of local TV stations is important for the success of Apple’s cable-cutter service, expected to launch in the fall for devices including iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. The service is speculated to cost between $10 and $40 per month.

At CBS, executives are talking to affiliates about conducting Apple negotiations on their behalf, one TV source confirmed.

At Fox, the network “has the ability to negotiate with Apple [for affiliates], or it will have it very soon,” a second executive added.

Disney and CBS will likely be among the first networks to reach a deal with Apple for its à-la-carte streaming TV service, according to the report, although some sticking points remain in the negotiations. Cable channels such as Discovery and ESPN are also expected to be included in the subscription-based service, which is rumored to include a skinny bundle of around 25 channels.



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Apple’s Desire to Include Local Stations in Streaming TV Service Could Delay Launch Beyond WWDC

Apple’s desire to provide customers with live programming from local broadcasting stations in the United States could delay the company’s plans to launch a streaming TV service in early fall, according to Re/code. The report also cites industry executives that do not believe Apple has reached any content deals with TV programmers yet, making it unlikely that the web-based TV service is announced at WWDC next month.

„Apple’s ambitions have complicated its negotiations with the broadcast TV networks, because most broadcasters don’t own all their local stations, and have an affiliate, or franchise system. Clearing the rights to show local programs and commercials takes some time — ABC, for instance, spent two years getting the rights to show live programming via its Watch ABC app, and its live streams remain limited to viewers in eight cities.“

The Wall Street Journal reported in March that Apple plans to unveil its streaming TV service at WWDC, anchored by popular networks such as ABC, CBS, Fox, ESPN and FX. The web-based TV service for iPhone, iPad, Apple TV and other devices is expected to deliver a lightweight package of about 25 channels for between $30 to $40 per month. The report claimed that the service will be available in September.





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Shazam, OneDrive, Porsche, FIFA 15, ESPN, JetBlue and More Apps Updated for Apple Watch

A number of notable apps have been updated with Apple Watch support to start off the week, including Shazam, Microsoft OneDrive, Porsche Car Connect, FIFA 15 Ultimate Team by EA SPORTS, Epicurious, Nick Jr, ESPN, Avea, JetBlue and Letterpad. The updates should be rolling out on the App Store today prior to the Apple Watch launch on April 24.

Shazam for Apple Watch will enable you to discover which artist, song and lyrics you are listening to from your wrist in seconds. You will also be able to see your past Shazams at a Glance with a simple swipe up gesture, turn on Auto Shazam to continue discovering music automatically and use Handoff on Apple Watch and iPhone to buy songs on iTunes, watch videos and more. Shazam is free on the App Store.

Microsoft recently released an update for the OneDrive app to view your photos and albums stored on the cloud storage service on an Apple Watch. You can view your most recent photos, delete photos you don’t want to keep, find photos by tag and view your albums directly from your wrist using the latest version of the app. OneDrive is free on the App Store with tiered storage plans available.

Porsche Car Connect for Apple Watch (Image: WatchAware)
Porsche Car Connect has been updated to allow remote display and control of your Porsche from an Apple Watch. The app, compatible with select 2014 models and later, provides safety notifications, journey statistics, vehicle status and a vehicle locator directly on the Apple Watch. Porsche Car Connect is free on the App Store and available for the new Panamera, 918 Spyder, Macan and Cayenne.

EA Sports has introduced new Apple Watch features for FIFA 15 Ultimate Team that help you assemble and manage the ultimate soccer team from your wrist. FIFA 15 Ultimate Team for Apple Watch lets you manage your top five player transfers and get instant game-related notifications. FIFA 15 Ultimate Team by EA SPORTS is free on the App Store with in-app purchases available.

Epicurious has introduced its smart kitchen timer app for Apple Watch. The app lets you choose from 40-plus ingredients from one of five categories — steak, vegetables, chicken and pork, seafood, and eggs — and the custom timer will tell you how long the food takes to cook. Epicurious will also give you cooking-related reminders and tips. The app is free on the App Store.

Nickelodeon updated Nick Jr. for the Apple Watch over the weekend, allowing iPhone users to manage their child’s Nick Jr. screen time through a Bluetooth connection right from the watch. Nick Jr. is free on the App Store and features full TV episodes, videos and iconic Nickelodeon characters on the iOS version.

ESPN updated its universal iOS app with Apple Watch support today, providing fans of the NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL, NCAA, Nascar and other sports and leagues with real-time notifications on scoring plays and breaking news on the wrist. Apple originally listed ESPN as one of its featured Apple Watch apps on its website last month. ESPN is free on the App Store.

Elgato today launched one of the first Apple Watch apps that can control a piece of hardware. The updated version of the Avea app is built for Apple Watch and allows users to pick their favorite dynamic light moods right from their wrists. Elgato Avea is free on the App Store.

By raising your wrist you can see which Avea light mood is currently on. Tap the Glance to switch to the selection menu of scenes and solid colors. By applying a Force Touch, users can bring up a scene’s settings. You can even program Avea’s Wake-Up light directly on Apple Watch.

JetBlue also became the latest airline to update their app with Apple Watch support, alongside American Airlines, Delta, British Airways, Air Canada, WestJet, Qantas Airways, Ryanair and several others. JetBlue for Apple Watch provides flyers with flight statuses in Glances, travel countdowns and access to their smart mobile boarding pass on the wrist. JetBlue is free on the App Store.

As reported by our sister website TouchArcade this morning, game developer NimbleBit has released Letterpad with Apple Watch support. The word game consists of forming words relating to a particular topic from a set of 9 letter tiles, and allows you to use hints that reveal a letter of one of the words you’re trying to find among the tiles. Letterpad is free on the App Store.




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