We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Reference and education software Reviews
15,670 Reviews

BBC Sport for iPhone review


Manufacturer: Media Applications Technologies Limited

Our Rating: We rate this 2 out of 5

The BBC has finally launched a dedicated sports app, but how does it measure up? Read our BBC Sport for iPhone review to find out.

We've been promised a dedicated iPhone app covering the BBC's sporting output for sometime now and here it is at last. Post London Olympics, post Euro 2012 and well into another season of football, it’s arrived with a modest fanfare from the BBC on the day when the broadcaster was forced to cutback significantly on local output. Regrettably, 39 BBC local radio stations in England and the Channel Islands now share the same generic, bland content weekday nights, with budget restrictions blamed for the decision. Those cutbacks appear to have played a rolein the introduction of this new BBC app, which feels poorly executed and missing key features found in other sports and radio themed apps. See all iPhone apps.

BBC Sport 

Currently, and its early days, the BBC Sport app resembles little more than the mobile version of the BBC's website. Navigation is basic but intuitive, with the option to view headlines across a range of sports and dig deeper by selecting links covering football, rugby, cricket, tennis, golf and more. Those links can be customised to delete and add sports and select headlines covering England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. Despite this regional option, finding sporting news from your particular area of the UK is hard work, particularly as we struggled to find any way to search news stories.  Take a look at BBC iPlayer 2.0 for iPhone and iPad review.

BBC Sport 

While the BBC lets users share those stories you stumble across via email, Facebook and Twitter, an option standard in any half decent app, BBC Sport lacks any real interaction. During live coverage of an FA Cup game, the 'get involved contact us' link to Twitter simply opens a Twitter page, a tiny one at that, from within the app. Push Notifications, offered by the dependable Eurosport app, also appear to be lacking. Bizarrely, you couldn't listen to the live commentary provided by Radio 5 Live and read a text based update and selected Tweets at the same time. Close the radio player from within the app, or try and listen in the background, while checking emails for example, or select the sleep button and the audio suddenly stops. The option to listen in the background is at the heart of any decent radio app, something which the excellent TuneIn Radio and numerous apps allow listeners to do. See Best iPhone & iPad Apps Advisor.

BBC Sport 

BBC Sport currently streams Radio 5 Live, and when broadcasting, which isn't often, sister station Radio 5 Live Sports Extra. The app lacks the option to tune into local sports coverage, due to rights issues while the ability to catch-up and listen to podcasts also appears to be lacking. At launch video is also solely lacking, although the BBC note in a press release: "Other features, including live and on-demand video highlights, and an application for Android devices, will be introduced soon." For now this is a poorly conceived app, which lacks native iPad support, that adds absolutely nothing that can't be found either online or via superior third party apps.

BBC Sport for iPhone review Expert Verdict »

Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later, optimised for iPhone 5.
  • Overall: We give this item 4 of 10 overall

We feel the BBC have scored a vital own goal here with an app that's not fit for purpose and reflects badly on an institution already under fire from critics over scandal and errors of judgement. We can only hope those shortcomings - a broken radio player, the lack of additional audio, video and Push Notifications - are fixed sooner than later.

  • iPlayer Radio review

    iPlayer Radio

    The BBC's iPlayer Radio app offers free access to live local and national radio broadcasts streamed over Wi-Fi or 3G on iPhone and iPod touch. Here's our iPlayer Radio review.

  • Grand Theft Auto: Vice City for iPad & iPhone review

    Grand Theft Auto: Vice City for iPad & iPhone

    Grand Theft Auto Vice City is still an excellent game, with incredibly high production values. Read our full Grand Theft Auto: Vice City for iPad & iPhone review to find out more.

  • BBC Olympics review

    BBC Olympics

    Last week we reviewed the London 2012 Official Results and Join In apps for iPhone and Android tablets and smartphones. As part of its pledge to broadcast 5,000 hours of London 2012 Olympic Games coverage, utilising all its digital channels, the BBC has now launched an app with almost identical functionality.

  • BBC iPlayer 2.0 for iPhone and iPad review

    BBC iPlayer 2.0 for iPhone and iPad

    The new BBC iPlayer iPhone and iPad app enables television to be downloaded, read our review to find out more.

  • Philips Fidelio Docking speaker DS8500 review

    Philips Fidelio Docking speaker DS8500

    The Philips Fidelio Docking speaker DS8500 is a large but sleek docking speaker system that works with iPhones, iPods, and - unlike most speaker docks - even iPads.

IDG UK Sites

Apple WWDC 2015 rumours: iOS 9, OS X 10.11, Apple TV & more

IDG UK Sites

Why I think the Apple Watch sucks and you'd be mad to buy it

IDG UK Sites

Kung Fury VFX behind-the-scenes: how Fido blew up everything for this year's most over-the-top film

IDG UK Sites

What will Apple launch at WWDC 2015, with one week to go? Apple TV, Macs, Beats Music, iOS 9, OS X 1......