Posted by Anthony Mowl in ALL, INTERNET, MOBILE on 09-01-11 No Comments
Why pay over $100 per month for cable or satellite tv services? No subscriptions or monthly fees, no hardware, no bandwidth limits! You get over 3,500 channels and unlimited 24/7 access. You should cancel your cable now, and get < insert scam here >.
We’ve all seen or heard of sites like this. Many of them promote live streaming of baseball and football games for one low cost. Satellite Direct, LiveBaseball-Channel, GigStreams… there are a lot of these sites out there. Unfortunately almost none of them work, guaranteed or no money back.
This guy shelled out $49 to try Satellite Direct, and all he got was the opportunity to make a YouTube video demonstrating what a fraud the site was. Beware of spending what seems to be one low price, and downloading software that has who-knows-what in the code. Among the red flags of these sites’ promotions is the total absence of league names and logos like MLB, NFL, NBA. No schedule of games exist, and yet people jump at the line “Watch more than just sports – thousands of extra channels free!” We all know the adage, if it’s too good to be true…
Adding to these sites’ “legitimacy” is the fact that they’ve created countless blogs, reviews, and postings that all claim that these sites are amazing and worth the money. But a dig a little deeper into these blogs and reviews and you find… nothing else. Even a search for “LiveBaseball-Channel Scam” is populated with the same fake blogs and reviews. Talk about search engine optimization.
To watch games online, go straight to the source. The guys at the league offices are such hard-asses when it comes to copyrighted content that there’s no way they’d let sites like LiveBaseball-Channel fly.
Get your games streamed online at:
Posted by Anthony Mowl in ALL, INTERNET, MOBILE, TELEVISION, Uncategorized on 08-31-11 No Comments
Baseball fans have less excuses to miss or reschedule flights now that some airlines have committed to showing all 2,400 Major League Baseball games live and in-flight. Row 44 is a developer of flying wi-fi hotspots on Southwest Airlines and other major airlines in Europe. While Row 44′s partnership with the MLB AdvancedMedia appears to be exclusive, it’s unclear if Southwest has an exclusive hold on Row 44 in the U.S. as well.
Since it seems as if Row 44 inked an exclusive agreement with baseball (a la DirectTV and the NFL), hardcore baseball fans might start scheduling all their spring through fall flights on Southwest. But is this really something to be excited about or simply a marketing gimmick? Fans who really can’t make it through a few hours on a plane without their baseball are probably already subscribing to MLB’s online package, MLB.TV, which they can access on any flight that has wi-fi. It’s likely that Row 44′s baseball games won’t be free, making this “exclusive deal” simply a good press release.
Beyond that, anyone who has used wi-fi aboard a flight knows that service is typically slow, and streaming video is rarely very effective. But then again, baseball isn’t as fast-paced as a basketball or football game, so streaming baseball just might work out.
Posted by Seth in INTERNET, MOBILE on 08-20-11 No Comments
Summer is fading fast, and that means football season is on its way. And that means another season of stat-keeping for high school football teams and the media that cover them.
There are all sorts of sophisticated stat tracking services that college and pro teams use, most notably StatCrew and Daktronics. But for high school teams, it’s hit and miss. Some schools have the budget to invest in a decent stat system while others don’t. Some coaches are diligent about tracking their stats while others aren’t. And there are so many ways of going about it that media covering high school sports are left to accommodate whatever methods the coaches in their area choose to use.
MaxPreps.com, which is part of the CBSSports family of websites, has launched an iPad app that lets coaches input their stats right from the sideline. This is really the most efficient way to keep track of the numbers, because if you don’t have someone taking stats as the game is in progress, the only way to get them is to go back and watch the video of the game and tack them from there. And if you want your stats to show up in the morning paper — which high school coaches and sports fans still expect — then taking the numbers off the video isn’t quick enough.
The MaxPreps app is far from the only option for tracking stats. There are plenty of others out there. The only problem with all this is that entering the numbers into one of these services doesn’t get them out to the media, which is something that comes with the territory for high school coaches. The MaxPreps system allows you to generate a pdf of your stats that can be emailed to the media. But a lot of papers — both large and small — have created their own online stat packages, and the stat services like MaxPreps don’t “talk to” newspaper websites. Some larger papers have online interfaces that coaches log into so they can enter their stats, which means coaches have to enter the numbers twice — once into whatever stat service they use and again into the paper’s website.
Right now, there are so many different ways for coaches to maintain their stats that finding the numbers you’re looking for is a crap shoot. Some coaches use MaxPreps. Some use other sites/services. MaxPreps might be a big enough player that it could standardize this data collection, which would be to the mutual benefit of coaches, media and fans. This summer the high school athletic association in Colorado announced that it was partnering with MaxPreps and requiring all of its football teams to use the site for scores and stats. Sounds like a step in the right direction.
Posted by Alex Dalenberg in MOBILE on 08-11-11 No Comments
Everybody’s pretty excited that there is actually going to be football this fall — admit it, when was the last time you were this interested in the preseason — but maybe in your enthusiasm you find that you’re a little… overcommitted this fantasy football season. Or maybe you’re the just that wanna-be GM who joins one-too-many leagues. Either way, keeping track of it all is going to be a juggle.
Add this to the growing pile of fantasy sports apps out there, but, if it’s good, it could just thing for hardcore, multiple-league fantasy players out there. A company called PRMtime Fantasy Sports — in partnership with the sports super-geeks over at Stats.com — is launching an app that will let you track all of your fantasy sports teams in one place from your smartphone or other mobile device.
PRMtime’s Mobile Live Scoring App will give users the ability to track real-time scoring for up to seven different leagues through its app as well as a web portal. The idea is you’ll be able to quickly get a general idea of what’s going on with your teams from pretty much anywhere without having to waste time logging into multiple league sites.
PRMtime says it will also be able to score teams for any type of league: commissioner, salary cap, challenge leagues, you name it.
However one big thing sticks out. The app doesn’t sync with all of your leagues, you’ll have to input roster data manually to take advantage of the tracking features. The silver lining: that roster flexibility also lets you test “What If” scenarios with players that aren’t actually on your team, so with some tinkering, this may actually be a cool application.
The app, which costs $4.99 per season, will be available Aug. 26 on both Android and iPhone.
Posted by Anthony Mowl in INTERNET, MOBILE, TELEVISION on 08-01-11 No Comments
I’m a die-hard Indianapolis Colts fan, and I refuse to miss even a single game they play. So when I got some great free tickets to go to a Washington Redskins game at the same time the Colts were playing, I had serious doubts about whether I wanted to go to the game. But these were club seats, and my girlfriend was going to kill me if I turned them down. Thankfully, we had DirectTV’s NFL Ticket, and NFL Ticket subscribers can stream games to their iPhone or iPad. Problem solved. While everyone was watching Mike Shanahan single-handedly implode the Redskins on the field, I was hunched over my iPhone watching Peyton Manning hook up with Dallas Clark over and over again while drinking $6 beers.
Watching games on a 2 1/2 inch screen like the iPhone isn’t ideal, but there are times when it’s necessary. The NCAA basketball tournament streams every game live over the Internet and on mobile apps, and there are millions of fans eternally thankful for the option. I can only imagine how many people sat on their office toilet away from their bosses, or were dragged on road trips to visit their in-laws, or were stuck on a train during their commute home, but were still able to watch the games. There is a need to stream games live over mobile devices, even if it isn’t going to be a primary source of watching games.
The Big Ten Network has jumped onboard, and last week announced it will be launching BTN2Go, offering more than 40 football games and more than 100 basketball games in addition to other programming. All content will be available to subscribers online and streamed over iPhone and the iPad. Yet another reason to be happy I opted for the iPhone over an Android device. But more than that, it seems as if there is a trend developing where we’re going to get more games streamed to our mobile devices.
In addition to DirectTV, the NCAA, the PGA Tour and now the Big Ten are streaming events live. While some people might be calling foul, and saying that screens are too small for this content, I say otherwise. It’s about having the option. I hope every game in every sport is streamed live so the poor folks stuck in airports waiting for connecting flights or even laid up in a hospital would still be able to keep up with their favorite teams. That’s the beauty of technology, and the opportunities it’s creating for us crazed sports fans.
Now let’s hope the capacity of wireless data networks can keep up with all these games. Especially when the Colts are on.
Posted by Anthony Mowl in ALL, MOBILE, STADIUM on 07-28-11 No Comments
The Portland Timbers soccer team just announced an app that will help their fans find their way around JELD-WEN Field. Fans will be able to find concession stands for beer, and find restrooms to release that beer back into the wild.
Thanks to Meridian, a do-it-yourself app maker, teams like the Timbers are able to quickly and easily produce GPS-enabled apps. Something like this would have been particularly useful when I went to the Indy 500 a few years ago and started walking in the wrong direction to my seat. 2 1/2 miles around the oval track left me too exhausted to enjoy all of the women around me lifting their shirts, even though that did perk me up a little bit in time for the race. At the time, apps did not exist, so I didn’t complain. But today, the Indianapolis Speedway had better get with the program and do as the Romans do.
The neat thing about Meridian’s products is that they allow digital media staff for teams and venues to easily design for the app without too much technical expertise. The flexibility allows the app to be much more than just a scaled-down version of the team’s website. The app plugs into existing content management systems as well as Meridian’s own customized CMS, which gives these guys the power to modify and produce new content on the app quickly and easily — things like what’s available for sale in concession stands, players and their stats, and RSS or Twitter feeds. Meridian has been used in museums like the Smithsonian to help people find their way around sprawling buildings and locate specific exhibits, but putting this stuff in a sports stadium sounds like a no-brainer.
I would definitely use this app to find my way around a new stadium (or racetrack), but once I’m at my seat, I really doubt I would use those apps for anything else. Like any good sports fan, I know who’s playing on the field before I arrive at the stadium, and I didn’t buy a ticket to stare at my smartphone. I would, however, use this app at home as one of my sources for information to do my homework before heading out to see a game.
Meridian apps’ ability to help teams produce more original content is going to keep them constantly busy in our “give us everything now” world. And that isn’t a terribly bad thing, considering fans are demanding more for less. As for me, I would be content if I could just find my seat quickly at the Indy 500 (sans the 5k walk), relax, and enjoy the view.
Posted by Seth in INTERNET, MOBILE on 07-26-11 No Comments
You gotta love that Bloomberg guy … he’s not just the mayor of New York anymore. And he’s not just the guy who founded Bloomberg News anymore either.
Over the last couple of years, Bloomberg has launched a sports division that has delved deeply into statistical analysis, including tools for fantasy sports enthusiasts. And the beat goes on for Bloomberg Sports, which this year started a video app specifically for Major League Baseball players and teams.
Baseball players have been examining video of their at bats for years. There are legendary stories of Tony Gwynn lugging multiple VCRs (VCRs!?!) on the road with him in order to fine tune his approach.
You wonder how much better Gwynn might have been if he’d had access to today’s technology. Bloomberg’s system allows players to access video of their at bats or pitches with a couple of taps on an iPad touchscreen. They can look for at bats in specific situations or against certain pitchers. You’re a right-handed hitter getting ready to face Roy Halladay? Punch up the video of every righty he faced in his last outing. Frustrated that you’re not getting good wood on the ball with two strikes? Punch up every at bat you’ve had this season with a two-strike count and see what pitchers have been doing to you. The flexibility and portability are remarkable. Players can access it via the web or using the iPad. In other words, anywhere, anytime.
Of course, the problem I always have with any analysis of this type is akin to the warning that Bloomberg’s financial services gurus might pass along to investors playing in the market: Past results aren’t indicative of future performance.
Surely, there are insights to be gleaned from examining your at bats or from watching how opposing pitchers worked against you. But then you actually have to go out on the field and play.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve watched my beloved Pittsburgh Pirates surge back from perpetual irrelevance and into first place in the National League Central Division. Earlier this month, they called up an outfielder from the minors named Alex Presley, who was hitting .333 in 20 games before going on the disabled list earlier this week. He’s had a nice run. But the inevitable question is this: What happens when he faces teams for the second or third time? It’s the proverbial “next time around the league” that is the telltale sign of how well a guy can hit. The opposing pitchers will adjust, so he’ll have to adjust too. Will he continue to smack the ball all over the place just because he’s checking out how pitchers worked against him the last time? That — much like the Pirates’ ability to stay competitive for the long haul — remains to be seen.
To be sure, this is an incredibly useful application, and Bloomberg has asserted itself as a company to watch in sports data analysis. But is there a point where teams and players get so caught up in the numbers and in looking for trends that they start overthinking?
Ty Cobb was a .366 career hitter, and the closest he could come to this Bloomberg system was a stack of black and white photos. And you thought Tony Gwynn and his VCRs were old school.
Posted by Seth in GAMING, MOBILE on 07-21-11 No Comments
We all know that Apple aspires to world domination, and I say if they’re going to do it they should quit doing it little by little and just rip the Band-Aid off already. Unfortunately, we’re not going to be that lucky, and they have apparently co-oped EA Sports as a co-conspirator.
EA is going to release its soccer game, FIFA 12 for the iPad. Take a guess at what you’re going to have to use as a controller. Here’s a hint: It’s an Apple product.
That’s right, the iPhone and iPod Touch aren’t just for talking on the phone or listening to music anymore. This is me trying to contain my excitement.
Now, speaking strictly from a gaming perspective, this is a pretty cool idea. Your controller, which has been simply a piece of plastic with buttons since the days of Pong and Space Invaders, now has a visual interface that opens up lots of new doors for interacting with the game. In fact, it’s such a good idea that Nintendo has a whole new console coming out next year based on the concept. The Nintendo Wii U will come with a touchscreen controller.
But there’s still something about this that rubs me the wrong way. It’s not enough that you plunked down $500 (or more!) for an iPad, now you need to have another mobile device from Apple so you can play games on it?
To be sure, this trend is going to send Sony and Nintendo scrambling to keep up in the mobile gaming market. Knowing what we all know about how things usually go for Apple, the cool factor of gaming on the iPad will turn Sony’s PSP and the Nintendo DS into items destined for the department store discount bin.
Posted by Silissa Kenney in MOBILE, TELEVISION on 07-19-11 No Comments
Breaking news! With the new $10 Orb Live app, you can stream TV, movies, and sports on your smartphone from sites like Hulu, Netflix, ESPN, and more. The app is available for the iPhone immediately, and will be ready for Android devices in mid-August.
OK, please tell me you are not jumping up and down with excitement right now. I mean, how much TV do you really need to watch?
The answer, apparently, is a lot. At least according to Orb, which cites a Nielsen study that mobile video viewing has increased 41 percent since last year.
“No matter where they are,” said Joe Costello, CEO of Orb Networks, ”people can use their mobile phone to get the same great content that is available on their home PC for watching at the beach, on the soccer field, at the airport or on a commuter train.”
On the soccer field?!? Why would anyone be watching TV on their smartphone at a soccer game?
If you are still jumping up and down, undeterred, with anticipation, you’ll be interested to know about one cool feature with this app. You can type in the show you want to watch and Orb Live will find it, whether it’s on Hulu, Netflix, ABC, or wherever. I like that. Still, I can’t see this app as being anywhere near necessary. Plus, the battery drain will prevent you from doing the things you’re supposed to use your phone for. Like work, or, I don’t know, actually talking to people.
Posted by Seth in INTERNET, MOBILE on 07-14-11 No Comments
Is it just me, or does this whole urge for apps not make any sense?
The way people talk about apps for smart phones and the iPad, you’d think these things were complex or were really doing something special. There’s one TV commercial running right now with a woman eyeing a smart phone in a store window and we hear the thoughts in her head: “Hmm, I could use a smart phone with social apps.” Aside from being horrible dialogue, they make it sound like “social apps” are far more important than they are. An icon that takes you to Twitter and another that takes you to Facebook … wow! Give me a minute to catch my breath.
When I got my BlackBerry — which admittedly has a far less extensive app market than the iPhone and iPad — I found a couple hundred sports apps. Two of them are worth having. Sports Illustrated has a nice one, and there’s ScoreMobile, which can be a little cranky at times, but has plenty of information. Both of them are free, and I wouldn’t dream of paying for them.
Apparently some iPad users don’t have the same attitude. I got a kick out of a couple of comments from people complaining about ESPN’s ScoreCenter XL for the iPad, which used to cost $4.99 and is now free. The iPhone version was free, but they had been charging for the iPad version, which made no sense.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great-looking app, jam-packed with information. The problem is it’s pointless. If you’ve got an iPad, you’ve got web access. There’s no reason you can’t just point the iPad’s browser at ESPN.com — or CBSSports.com or SI.com or Yahoo Sports or The Sporting News or FoxSports.com or The Sports Network or the league websites … or any number of other places — to get the scores and info you’re looking for. OK, so it’s a couple extra taps of the touchscreen.
Anybody who felt a need to pay $4.99 to avoid that needs their head examined.
New podcasts available every Wednesday!
Episode 73: The TSC Zombies Live!
We celebrate our final show at Hothead Studios by breaking down sports video games from E3; talkin’ through some dang sports video baseball cards and then go getting into the fallout from Derek Boogarrd’s untimely death. Finally, what we have all been waiting for: Dan on latest on with Posada’s crazy, tweeting wife. Share this [...]
Episode 72: Dan’s Cool Rugby Shirt
Blum breaks down 42 miles on a bike with no chain. Evans reports on the Oprah/Nike summit. Dan’s got a rugby johns he would like to share. And some high tech tricks to baseball scouting. (26.8 KB, 27.10 Minutes) Share this post:ShareEmailPrintStumbleUponRedditDigg
Episode 71: The NFL For President!
Dan breaks down the body blow online poker just took from regulators. Blum talks up the new book about what the NFL has to teach capitalism. Seth hates yet another video game. And finally ESPN on your iPad. (25.3 mb, 25.4 minutes) Share this post:ShareEmailPrintStumbleUponRedditDigg
Episode 70: “Are You Ready to Rumble?”
MLB TV’s online service is legitimately cool. The Masters will be a non-event online. Tiger Woods plays with crappy equipment and Blum compares betting on Wrestlemania to trading corn futures. Share this post:ShareEmailPrintStumbleUponRedditDigg
Episode 69: “A Podcast Unlike Any Other”
The organizers of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar seek to bend nature to their will with artificial clouds. Blum gloats over the NCAA Selection Committee’s epic seeding failures. Blackberry “Super” Apps underwhelm and Dan takes a crack at the new Masters video game. Share this post:ShareEmailPrintStumbleUponRedditDigg
Episode 68: “Revenge of the Nerds”
Seth and Blum mix it up with MIT over sports data. Dan reviews EA’s Fight Night Champion (virtual boxing is better than the real thing). Amar’e Stoudemire’s goggles get explained and the guys tour some physical fitness web sites. All that, plus, the week in review. Share this post:ShareEmailPrintStumbleUponRedditDigg
Episode 67: “Follow the Bouncing Blum”
Dan’s on the injured reserve this week, so Blum’s flying solo (with an assist from Seth the Tech Nihilist). In this episode: Seth breaks down March Madness On Demand, Blum wonders what gives with the crap-tastic apps that are dominating college athletics, a look into the NFL’s financial picture, plus the week in review at [...]
Episode 66: “It’s Hockey Night Tonight!”
It’s all hockey all the time for this week’s episode. Dan and Blum look at the cross-border battle between the Winter Classic and Heritage Classic as well as the Buffalo Sabres ownership change. Dan and Seth the Tech Nihilist reminisce about the classic NHL video games. Plus, how did a trade between the Stars and [...]
Episode 65: “Take This Job and Shove It”
Blum pitches his wild-eyed plan for NFL players to use social media to circumvent ownership. Seth the Tech-Nihilist gives his report on the new MLB.Com. Dan reviews NHL ’11 (it’s awesome) and digs into some racing tech at Daytona. Share this post:ShareEmailPrintStumbleUponRedditDigg
Episode 64: “Jets Fans are Damaged Individuals”
As Blum gloats, Dan lets the Jets know they can go straight to hell. Also, the best televisions for your Super Bowl party; Dan discovers Broadcast HD; Blum shares his illicit passion for wooden baseball bats; PLUS, the best sports e-books for your e-reader. Share this post:ShareEmailPrintStumbleUponRedditDigg