New Apple Sports App for iPhone Is for Sports Stats Junkies

The app is free and has a single purpose: Display real-time sports scores, stats, and more as quickly as possible.

Apple Sports app launching on iPhone in the U.S., Canada, and UK

I know we all love Marvel and Star Wars and tech, but do we also have any sports fans here at Inverse? If your answer is yes, then you might be excited to hear that Christmas has arrived in February. Today, Apple is launching a new iPhone app called Apple Sports for tracking real-time professional sports teams and their games, scores, and stats.

The free iPhone app, available to download from the App Store in the U.S., Canada, and UK, is deceptively simple, but has plenty of personalization so everyone can make it their own for following their favorite teams, leagues, and players.

Apple offered media, including yours truly, a brief preview of the Apple Sports app ahead of its release, emphasizing the app’s goal to deliver sports information in “real-time” and as quickly as possible.

The Apple Sports is launching with 10 leagues to follow, including MLS, NBA, men’s and women’s NCAA basketball, NHL, Bundesliga, LaLiga, Liga MX, Lique 1, Premier League, and Serie A. The company plans to add the MLB, NFL, NCAAF, NWSL, and WNBA when their seasons start, respectively.

Using the Apple Sports App

The main screen view for the Apple Sports app on iPhone.


I mean it when I say that the Apple Sports app looks simple. It’s plain by design, but with color nods to the teams you follow. The main screen shows the “Today” tab with teams you’ve favorited and displays current scores and game time if they’re playing. You can swipe back to “Yesterday” and “Upcoming” to see the same for past games and when they’re playing next.

Tap into a match between two teams and you’ll get more detailed sports stats, including a summary of the time, play-by-play, and even betting odds. (Yes, betting odds, though you can turn that off if you don’t want to see it.) Again, the goal of the Apple Sports app is to deliver sports stats at real-time (or near real-time) speed. That includes information like changes to players on the field or court, goals, fouls, card flags, etc. Where’s all this info coming from? Apple won’t say specifically, only that it’s partnered with third parties to source the info and then update the app as soon as possible.

Tapping a game brings up a card of sports stats.


There’s also a button to launch the Apple TV app to view a live game; Apple TV+ app has access to Major League Soccer with MLS Season Pass and Friday Night Baseball. For live sports broadcasts on other streaming services, you’ll have to watch them through their respective apps, either launched via the Apple TV app or separately. Apple says there are over 30 connected apps for watching sports.

Naturally, you might want to see highlight clips in the Apple Sports app. For obvious copyright reasons, that’s not possible. You’ll have to turn to social media or the official sports apps and websites, or third-party content providers and publications for that. Maybe one day, Apple Sports will be a one-stop destination for all things happening for any sports game.

On the upside, Apple Sports supports Live Activities (remember this feature?) on the iPhone 14 Pro and all iPhone 15 devices (regular and Pro models) so you can see stats on the lock screen.

Sports Is Apple’s Next Services Goldmine

The welcome screen for the Apple Sports app.


When Apple expanded beyond hardware and operating system software and into services a few years ago, it started small. Apple TV+ was not the threat to Netflix or Amazon Prime Video at launch; it took a few years to build up its library of prestige television shows. Apple similarly dipped its toes into News+, Arcade for games, Music, and Fitness+.

It’s not surprising at all that Apple’s services business is expanding into sports. Apple CEO Tim Cook is a huge football and soccer fan, and Eddy Cue, the senior vice president of services, is a sports fanatic, too, who’s regularly seen courtside at NBA games (usually cheering his home team, the Golden State Warriors). Cue reportedly has nine TV screens “arrayed in a grid, plus a digital ticker relaying scores,” according to a GQ feature last September. The guy in charge of Apple services is a sports stats junkie and now the company he works at is launching an Apple Sports app? One plus one does equal two, after all!

The offerings in the Apple Sports app look barebones now, and the app is free as opposed to paid, but check back in a few years and it’ll likely look more padded out with a subscription fee that offers more. Apple says it’s interested in adding more sports and leagues in the future, including Formula 1 and professional tennis.

There’s also the matter of the missing iPad and Mac apps. I guess Apple needs to save the apps for future announcements, but you can be pretty sure that the company will create apps for those platforms and probably even Vision Pro.

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